The Old Chain of Rocks Bridge that connects Madison, Ill., and north St. Louis, Ill., is part of an old alignment of Route 66. It's now used as part of a Trailnet walking and bicycling trail that connects the St. Louis Riverfront Trail and the MCT Confluence Trail.
On Monday, Trailnet will begin fees of $2 for vehicles and $10 for big vehicles that carry 15 passengers or more from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. in its parking lot on the west side of the bridge. Walkers and cyclists who enter the bridge from the trails won't be charged.
According to a news release from Trailnet:
"We decided to provide this service to ensure a convenient and comfortable parking experience for those visiting the Old Chain of Rocks Bridge," said Wayne Goode, President of the Trailnet board of directors. "The bridge will continue to be open during regular operating hours, a half hour before sunrise and a half hour after sunset. The lot will be monitored from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., when the parking fee is in effect."
The parking lot had been the site of several car burglaries. So a "monitored" lot for what I consider to be a nominal fee is a good thing. And those who want to avoid the fee can simply schedule their visit to the Old Chain of Rocks Bridge around those hours.