Federal, state, local officials join to open Stan Musial Veterans Memorial Bridge

(Photo: via CBS St. Louis)(Photo: via CBS St. Louis)

The Stan Musial Veterans Memorial Bridge is now open.

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn, U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin, Missouri Governor Jay Nixon, and several local officials joined Saturday to open the $695 million bridge, KFVS reports.

The bridge — its name, in particular — brought on a bit of controversy last year between the states it would be linking. Missouri officials wanted to name the span after baseball great Stan Musial, while Illinois officials pushed to call it Veteran’s Memorial Bridge. Within days, the states compromised, dubbing the structure the Stan Musial Veteran’s Memorial Bridge.

The span carries two traffic lanes in each direction across the Mississippi River, with space to expand by one more lane in each direction.

The project was a joint effort between Illinois and Missouri, with Illinois contributing $347 million and Missouri contributing $41 million.

According to the report, the bridge, which is part of Quinn’s $31 billion Illinois Jobs Now! program, “has created or supported more than 9,000 jobs.”