UPDATE: After missing for 24 hours, the historical plaque from the
previous Huguenot Memorial Bridge has been returned to the Virginia Department
An attempted theft was unsuccessful when the crook was unable to carry the heavy sign, which weighs over 75 pounds, out of the Huguenot Flatwater Park. A representative from the Richmond Department of Parks and Recreation found the abandoned sign along the park trail and returned it to VDOT this morning.
RICHMOND – On the same day the Virginia Department of Transportation announced the completion of the three-year Huguenot Memorial Bridge project, the cast iron placard commemorating the old Huguenot bridge was stolen.
The 75-pound sign was taken within the last 24 hours according to VDOT spokeswoman Dawn Eischen. It was bolted to a section of the old bridge railing. This display is under the new bridge along the Huguenot Flatwater Park trail.
"We had planned to use this plaque as part of a historical display we had had a lot of people who had come to us around the time we were demolishing the bridge and they had said can't we have something to remember the old bridge," Eischen says.
On the new Huguenot Memorial Bridge, VDOT says finishing details are complete.
"The new bridge structure offers capacity and safety features that the previous 62-year-old bridge could not. Ten-foot shoulders were added to each side of 12-foot vehicle travel lanes to provide accommodations for cyclists and emergency break downs. Pedestrians can safely enjoy a walk across the bridge using the five foot wide sidewalks," a VDOT news released indicated.
VDOT was going to unveil the display at a ceremony celebrating the opening of the new bridge Wednesday morning. That has been postponed while conduct an investigation into who took the plaque.
Anyone with information is asked to call 780-1000.
Stay with 8News for more details.
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