The suspension bridge in Souris, Man., is about to swing back into action.

Mayor Darryl Jackson said not having the community's number one tourist attraction since 2011 has made a significant impact.

"They've had closed signs on the highway traffic signs pointing to the Souris Swinging Bridge attraction. So that has hurt our tourist trade," he said.


The town of Souris was forced to sever its historic suspension bridge, built in 1904, during the 2011 flood. (Courtesy Province of Manitoba)

The Hillcrest Museum, next to the bridge, used to get 500 visitors a week but last year that number plummeted to about 50.

"That's a 90 per cent drop, so that's pretty huge," Jackson said.

Officials were forced during flooding in 2011 to sever the landmark bridge, built in 1904, due to fears the rushing waters could pull out the bridge's anchors and damage an important earth dike, putting the entire town at risk.

The rebuilt, $4-million bridge now sits higher over the water and has different support structures.

The official grand opening takes place Aug. 17 but the bridge will actually be open starting Saturday for a short, week long trial.

Then engineers will recalibrate the bridge and get it ready for the big opening.