FIU to Build New Bridge, Memorializing Victims of Bridge Collapse

President Rosenberg at a vigil held for victims of the Bridge Collapse held a year after the tragedy.

By: Joshua Ceballos/Investigative Editor


The University plans to build a new bridge over Tamiami Trail and use it as a memorial for the six victims of the deadly pedestrian bridge collapse in March 2018 says University President Mark B. Rosenberg.

In an email sent to the FIU Community, Rosenberg responded to the findings of the National Transportation Safety Board this morning by saying that despite the tragedy and FIU’s part in not closing the road, a bridge is still necessary for students to cross the busy street.

“We are heartbroken that the road was not closed and are committed to doing our part to help prevent something similar from happening again,” said Rosenberg in the email. He added that “the number of students living on the other side of 8th Street is expected to double, and a pedestrian bridge is needed for the more than 3,000 students who must cross 8th Street safely several times a day.”

Rosenberg also said that the victims of the collapse will be memorialized as part of the University City Prosperity Project with the City of Sweetwater.

This morning at a public board meeting, the NTSB concluded after months of investigation that the bridge collapsed due to serious errors in the design by FIGG Engineering Group and lack of proper oversight. They also found that FIU and other project stakeholders could have suspended construction or closed the road when they saw huge cracks in the concrete, but failed to do so.

Rosenberg said in his statement that FIU relied on “qualified professionals” to notify them of any safety concerns, but the NTSB noted that it was the University’s Associate Vice President for Facilities Management’s job to notify the construction company of any concerns.

PantherNOW has reached out to Rosenberg as well as University Chief Financial Officer Kenneth Jessell, who helped manage the project from FIU’s side, and will update this article with their response.

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