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New Hastings Bridge to include tributes to city's history

These medallions found in the bridge railings will pay tribute to Hastings' history

HASTINGS - The new Hastings bridge is being designed to make a bold, modern statement about Hastings. But it will also be a tribute to the city's history.

One such way it will look back is through its railings. Built into the railings will be 12 medallions, or metal circles with designs cut into them. Three designs have been proposed: images of the Spiral Bridge, the existing bridge and Hastings City Hall.

"This is bridge number three, and just because we're tearing down the existing bridge and tore down the Spiral Bridge, we don't want to forget," said Mike Slavik, Hastings City Council member and a member of the bridge project's Visual Quality Team.

The medallions were proposed by the bridge contractors, Lunda/Ames, Slavik said. The Visual Quality Team had set minimum aesthetic standards for the project.

"At the same time, the project builders had a bit of freedom to do what they chose to do," Slavik said.

The medallions are basically large metal circles with a design laser cut into them. The Visual Quality Team learned of the plan to include the medallions last year, and since then has been talking about ideas for images to put on them. There's about a 90 percent chance that the three designs being proposed will actually appear on the bridge, Slavik said. Members of the Visual Quality Team are taking the designs to their constituents to find out if people like them.

"I'm in the camp that does (like them)," Slavik said.