Gov. Beshear Presents More than $400,000 in Campbell County for Purple People Bridge, Festival Park and Alexandria Community Park

Governor's Office - 04/26/2022

Gov. Beshear Presents More than $400,000 in Campbell County for Purple People Bridge, Festival Park and Alexandria Community Park
NEWPORT, Ky. (Apr. 26, 2022) – Today, Gov. Andy Beshear awarded $406,000 in Campbell County for three projects improving outdoor infrastructure and recreational spaces at the Purple People Bridge, Newport Festival Park and Alexandria Community Park.

“Kentucky families deserve safe and fun outdoor spaces where they can stay healthy, get fresh air and spend time with their loved ones,” Gov. Beshear said. “As a dad – and as Governor – I know we can build a better Kentucky by investing in our infrastructure, especially the structures that benefit our kids. The Purple People Bridge, Festival Park and Alexandria Community Park are all huge assets to the Campbell County community and I am proud to present this funding to help make them even better.”

Purple People Bridge
The Governor awarded $175,000 to the City of Newport for improvements to the Purple People Bridge, a pedestrian bridge that connects Kentucky to Ohio. It is the longest connector of its kind in the country that links two states. In addition to serving walkers and cyclists, the bridge is also wide enough to host festivals and other events. Nearly one million people cross the bridge every year.

The funding comes from the Department for Local Government’s Recreational Trails Program (RTP), and will address maintenance needs on the bridge, specifically the expansion joints between bridge sections and sandstone repairs on bridge piers. The project also includes other upgrades, such as improving electric and water service and enhancing the bridge deck through the stripping of former roadway markings and resurfacing the blacktop areas on the approach.

“The Purple People Bridge is an iconic landmark within the Recreational Trails Program in Northern Kentucky,” Senator Wil Schroder said. “The grant awarded for the maintenance and trail upgrades to this pedestrian bridge will ensure that future generations get to enjoy it.”

“The Purple People Bridge unites our region, brings us all together and encourages us all to get outdoors. Whether Kentuckians are walking it to a Reds game, Cincinnatians are biking over to visit the Levee, or you are part of one of the hundreds of running groups that use it daily, it connects our region in a wonderful way,” said Rep. Rachel Roberts, who represents part of Campbell County. “I am grateful that this grant will provide for repairs and maintenance and ensure that we can all continue to connect via the bridge.”

“The Purple People Bridge allows for foot traffic between Newport and Cincinnati,” Department for Local Government Commissioner Dennis Keene said. “I remember working hard to establish Newport on the Levee in my time as a state representative, and the businesses there rely on that foot traffic. This is a big win for Newport and for Kentucky.”

“The Purple People Bridge is an extremely important connector for the entire region,” said Newport Mayor Tom Guidugli Jr.. “We wish to thank Gov. Beshear and the state of Kentucky for this much-needed grant. It is vital funding that will go toward supporting and maintaining this historic regional asset.”

“On behalf of the Bridge Company, and all of Northern Kentucky and Greater Cincinnati, we thank Governor Beshear for his support of the Purple People Bridge,” President of Newport Southbank Bridge Company Will Weber said. “This grant will fund much needed maintenance and upgrades on the Purple People Bridge. It also provides a reminder of the commitment to promoting tourism, economic development and community enhancements in the commonwealth.”

Newport Festival Park
Gov. Beshear awarded $200,000 to the City of Newport from the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) to construct play areas at Festival Park. This project will also improve ADA-compliant access to the upper and lower terraces of Festival Park and provide new park amenities.

Alexandria Community Park Picnic Shelter
Gov. Beshear awarded $31,000 to the City of Alexandria from the LWCF. The project includes demolishing the current picnic shelter at Alexandria Community Park and constructing a larger shelter that will cover more than twice the area of the existing shelter.

“The City of Alexandria is excited to receive the Land and Water Conservation Fund grant, to construct the Park Board’s vision of a larger, more accommodating picnic shelter with inclusive platform seating at Alexandria’s Community Park,” Alexandria Mayor Andy Schabell said. “Each year we see the increasing popularity of our park, and this welcome addition will provide many with a shady spot to enjoy the outdoors, for years to come.”

About the Recreational Trails Program
The RTP is funded by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). It can be used to provide assistance for acquisition of easements, development and/or maintenance of recreational trails and trailhead facilities for both motorized and non-motorized use. The RTP benefits communities and enhances quality of life. All trails that have received FHWA funding must remain open to the public and be maintained for perpetuity.

About the Land and Water Conservation Fund
The LWCF provides federal grant funds to protect important natural areas, to acquire land for outdoor recreation and to develop or renovate public outdoor recreation facilities such as campgrounds, picnic areas, sports and playfields, swimming facilities, boating facilities, fishing facilities, trails, natural areas and passive parks. To receive the federal funds, which are administered at the state level by the Department for Local Government, selected applicants must undergo federal review and receive approval from the National Park Service.