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This Bridge Has a Cool, New Feature: A Bike Path to Nowhere

You’re welcome, cyclists.

Later this week, Montreal’s Mercier Bridge will reopen after two months of intense construction. The bridge links the borough of LaSalle with the south shore of the Saint Lawrence River, and is the fastest way to get from the city to the U.S. border. Post-fixup, it boasts a couple of cool amenities: a brand new deck, and even better, a two-lane bike path.

The bridge hasn’t provided bike access since 2009. But delighted cyclists should think twice before trying this one out. As the Montreal Gazette explains, it disappears halfway across the river.

The repairs were done on the south side of the bridge, which falls under federal jurisdiction. The north side is, instead, provincial turf. “There are as yet no plans to continue the path on the provincial side of the bridge,” writes the Gazette. “Nor are there current plans to link it to bike paths at the foot of the bridge on the South Shore side.”

The Gazette goes on to explain exactly why this is—it has to do with planning for the future, the difficulties of coordinating different branches of government, and other muddy concerns. But the immediate consequences are clear. For the foreseeable future, the Mercier Bridge will tempt two-wheeled commuters with a bike path just out of reach—one that, if they used it, would plunge them straight into the water.

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