To maintain safety for on-site construction workers, public access to the Riverside Inn Bridge construction area is closed and will stay closed until the new bridge is finished. 

The contractor received its notice to proceed on April 6, and the anticipated completion date is the winter of 2020. The project is subject to weather conditions over the course of the build that may affect the target completion date.

This $2.54 million project is a cost-share agreement between the Ozark Special Road District, Christian County, and city of Ozark. 

The new Riverside Inn Bridge will bring back a river crossing for Ozark residents and is expected to benefit everyone from drivers to bicyclists, as well as reduce response times for our emergency responders who must cross the Finley River. Once the bridge is complete the plan is to allow public access to the river in that area to reopen.

On May 7, workers could be seen building up the approach to the bridge on the south bank of the Finley River. They are using fill dirt from nearby subdivision developments to build up the overall height of the new bridge, so that its deck and substructure will be less susceptible to floodwater and debris damage than the previous bridge.

The Christian County Commission voted 3-0 to accept a bid for construction of a new bridge that will carry Riverside Road over the Finley River, awarding the project to Springfield-based Hartman and Company, Inc. on Nov. 15, 2019.

Those bids were evaluated by consulting engineers from Great River Engineering, a Springfield firm handling the planning and design work for the new bridge. The Missouri Department of Transportation also had to renew the bids after they were opened on Oct. 24, 2019.

Planning for a new Riverside Bridge began about seven years ago, with a desire to preserve the history of the original bridge in mind for many along the way.

The new bridge will have two 12-foot car lanes wide enough for school buses and emergency vehicles, a 10-foot bicycle and pedestrian lane and improved road approaches to the bridge between the intersections of Riverside Road and Greenbridge Road and Riverside Road and Smallin Road.

To stay up to date on the Riverside Bridge construction project visit the

Construction crews finished removing the historic Riverside Bridge from its place across the Finley River on Jan. 30, 2019. The bridge will be relocated south to a spot south of the McCracken Road bridge near Finley River Park, where it will be used as part of Bass Pro Shops’ Finley Farms development.

Originally built in 1909, the Riverside Bridge was located next to the Ozark Mill. Craftsmen later determined the bridge wasn’t wide enough to properly serve the location and it was moved approximately a mile and a half to the north, where it took Riverside Road across the Finley River until the bridge was closed for good in 2015.

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