Wichita, KAN. -- The Butler County Commission voted Tuesday to allow the Kansas Department of Transportation to tear down an old railroad bridge over U.S. Highway 400.
The bridge just west of Santa Fe Lake Road hasn't had tracks on it for years. KDOT wants to tear down the bridge for safety reasons and to allow highway improvements later this year.
A group called Prairie Travelers would like to see a pedestrian bridge put up in the same spot to someday connect with the Redbud nature trail of Andover - Augusta.
"It will change our image as a town", said the group's secretary, Ruth Holiday. "To be there for people who want to be outdoors and want to exercise."
The commission voted four to 1 to have KDOT tear down the bridge with an eye toward putting up a pedestrian bridge if the pedestrian trail can be build to this area within a decade. Under the gentlemen's agreement, KDOT would pay for 80% of the pedestrian bridge's construction and the county would pay for 20%. The Prairie Travelers group would help with the fund raising effort.