One of the delayed Panther Island bridges could carry traffic to downtown soon


Traffic should flow over the White Settlement Road bridge near downtown Fort Worth by sometime in February.

The bridge, and two others, are needed to connect downtown to the planned Panther Island, an 800-acre island in the Trinity River that would be formed after a bypass channel is cut between the two forks. The $1.17 billion project has languished without federal financial support for years.

Doug Rademaker, a senior project manager for the city, said in November he expected traffic to open on the bridge in the “very first part of the year,” but didn’t provide a specific date. The most recent Texas Department of Transportation schedule for the bridge now shows it opening in February, according to the project’s Twitter account. 

Weather permitting, crews will make the final pour for the deck on this week.

The bridge, and those for North Main and Henderson will span dry ground until the channel is dug.

Rademaker did not immediately return a call and email for details about the bridge opening, but a Tarrant Regional Water District spokesman said board members were told Tuesday the bridge would open in February.

The White Settlement Road bridge has been a pain for businesses along the road west of the river. Unlike the other two streets, an easy detour does not exist for White Settlement Road, so traffic has largely been cut off.

Once scheduled to open in 2017, the bridges were delayed by design issues and the completion date was pushed back two years. At one point in 2019, project officials said the White Settlement bridge would be finished by late summer 2020. The date was pushed back again to the end of December before being rescheduled for February 2021.

Work on the North Main Street bridge should be done in the spring of 2021 and the Henderson Street bridge should follow shortly after. Those bridges were expected to be finished by December 2021.

Construction is expected to be completed by February on one of the Panther Island Project bridges on White Settlement Road. Yffy Yossifor