DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – For 83 years, the Continental Avenue Bridge has been a main corridor into downtown, but Monday, it will close to traffic and eventually re-open with a new identity.

Dallas city leaders are turning the bridge into a pedestrian and bike friendly “unique outdoor space.” The city has pushed to develop the area near the Trinity River corridor and create more destination areas for residents and visitors for some time. This is their latest project.

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It’s costing close to $12 million, with $8.35 million donated by the Trinity Trust. The rest is city bond money.

For long-time business owners such as Maria Jones, who owns Lulu B’s Antiques on Riverfront Blvd., any help bringing traffic to the largely industrial area is welcome.

“Having a park and having some place for people to go and bring their families. I think it’s going to benefit the whole design district, just bringing in that customer base,” Jones said.

Signs at both entrances of the bridge are warning drivers that the bridge will remain closed until May of 2014.

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There were drivers taking one last spin across the bridge, but it still has much less traffic than it’s towering neighbor, the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge.

The bridge will close just after midnight Monday.

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