The Franklin County Board of Supervisors, Ferrum College, and the community celebrated the completion of the Ferrum Pedestrian Bridge with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Wednesday, April 28, 2021 at 10 a.m. Over 50 people attended the outdoor event, which took place on the Timber Line Road side of the pedestrian bridge in Ferrum.
The 360-foot-long bridge connects the Ferrum College campus sidewalk to the Dollar General Store located on the Virginia Route 40. The separate pedestrian bridge runs parallel to the narrow Sheriff Shively Bridge and is essential to keeping Ferrum students and other pedestrians safe as they cross the Norfolk Southern railroad tracks.
“We are proud to partner with the Franklin County Board of Supervisors, VDOT, and the Village of Ferrum to create a safe walking space for our students and community members,” said President David Johns. “This pedestrian bridge is an important asset for Ferrum, for business and for recreation, and it is going to strengthen ties in our community for years to come.”
“The new pedestrian bridge is very important to the community, and the College,” said Franklin County Board of Supervisors Vice-Chairman and Blue Ridge Supervisor Tim Tatum. “It is something that the community and College have promoted for some time. The recent Ferrum Village Plan identified this as a need to create a more walkable community that would benefit the community, the College, and the businesses in the area.”
The County successfully secured funding for the project through the Virginia Department of Transportation’s revenue sharing program and local matching funding from Franklin County and Ferrum College.
“Processes like this tend to be slow and that’s okay as long as we get there,” said Ferrum community member Bobby Thompson, who has been a longtime advocate for the construction of the pedestrian bridge. “We’ve experienced a really good partnership between the college community, VDOT, and the county. The Ferrum community is more connected now.”