BELTON, Texas (FOX 44) — Members and public figures of the Belton community gathered Friday for the announcement of the East Central Avenue and Spring Street bridge replacement funding.

Belton Mayor Wayne Carpenter and Texas 31st District Congressman John Carter shared with the community the 5 million dollar federal funding the city received for the removal of Belton’s last low water crossing.

Belton Mayor Wayne Carpenter & Texas 31st District Congressman John Carter

Through collaborative efforts with various institutions within Bell County, Friday’s announcement was rewarding for many.

“They put together a perfect program for what they wanted and what they needed, and we asked them to submit those things that we could count and that way we could get good spendable money. That meant something for the community,” shared Texas 31st District Congressman John Carter.

The project aims to eliminate unnecessary traffic, assist in flood mitigation for private and public properties, access to both critical city utility infrastructure and regional law enforcement training facility, and development of landlocked properties.

Belton Mayor Wayne Carpenter is excited to retire the bridge that frequently builds up debris and backs up the water crossing.

“It’s been a long time dream for some of us, especially those of us who’ve been here for a long time and have seen the damage that no one great can do. Most exciting thing about it may be the development of this area, because this area has been underutilized for generations, ever since this was built here. It’s been a problem, ” shared Mayor Carpenter.

The opportunities the bridge’s replacement potentially offers varies from commercial use, to park-lands, and quicker access to a gun range that multiple law enforcement agencies use.

Planning for the design of the bridge is set to begin late this year with construction to follow.

The Belton community welcomes all to the growing city.