New walking, cycling bridge over Rideau Canal set to open this weekend

A photo of the Flora Footbridge under construction in April 2019. The new pedestrian and cyclist crossing over the Rideau Canal will open months ahead of schedule, either on June 28 or June 29, according to the City of Ottawa. City of Ottawa

UPDATE: The city announced at noon on Friday that the Flora Footbridge has officially opened.

A new pedestrian and cyclist bridge over the Rideau Canal will open this weekend, months ahead of schedule, the City of Ottawa says.

Mayor Jim Watson, accompanied by Capital Coun. Shawn Menard and Ottawa Centre MP Catherine McKenna, announced on Wednesday afternoon that the Flora Footbridge will open either Friday or Saturday.

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The $21-million crossing will connect Fifth Avenue in the Glebe neighbourhood, near Lansdowne Park, to Clegg Avenue in Old Ottawa East. Its completion was originally scheduled for sometime this fall.

WATCH: (May 16, 2018) Rideau Canal gets ready to open

Click to play video: 'Rideau Canal gets ready to open' Rideau Canal gets ready to open
Rideau Canal gets ready to open – May 16, 2018

City council voted last summer to name the new crossing after Flora MacDonald, a decorated Canadian politician who served as the country’s first female foreign minister.

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MacDonald lived in the area just south of the downtown core and often speed-skated on the canal. She passed away in 2015.

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The footbridge was funded by all three levels of government.

“After years of planning, community involvement and coordination among the city, the province and our government, it’s great to see the Flora Footbridge becoming a reality for people living near or travelling along the Rideau Canal,” McKenna, the federal minister of environment, wrote in a release issued by the city.

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