Work underway on the MKT Heights hike-and-bike trail bridge will require additional time to address after crews uncovered structural damage that was not initially visible, officials announced Sept. 10.

The repairs—which started in June to address damage from a fire that took place in August 2020—were originally slated to wrap up in 60-90 days. The timeline for when the bridge will be completed is now to be determined, said Beth White, president and CEO of the Houston Parks Board, which is funding the project.

"We're working through what those next repairs are that need to be done so we can safely reopen," White said. "We want to take care of any damage to the bridge that was caused by the fire and get it all addressed at once while the bridge is closed. We were really disappointed ourselves because we were really anxious to get it back open."

HPB is working with the city of Houston and structural engineers to assess the extent of the newly uncovered damage, White said. Repairs will also take natural wear-and-tear into account, she said.

Following the assessment, plans will be adjusted and go through the design and permitting phase, White said. The new plans will require approval from the city of Houston, which owns the bridge, and the Harris County Flood Control District before they can move forward.

An existing detour to the Heights Boulevard bridge will remain in place throughout the process.

White said they will work as diligently as possible to get the bridge back open.

"It’s such a beloved piece of system," she said. "We’re working to do it, but we want to do it right."