More than a year after it was destroyed by Hurricane Anna, a vital bridge linking the Ouest and Artibonite Departments was reopened on Saturday. The bridge at Montrouis is part of Highway 1, which connects the north and south of the country.

It was a festive occasion in the town 50 km north of the capital as hundreds turned out to witness the opening presided over by Prime Minister Michelle Pierre-Louis and French Foreign Minister Bernard Kushner.

“We have waited 382 days,” said Mayor Bona Charles, “may life return to Montrouis for the joy of all.”

The reconstruction project, funded by the French government cost $1.5 million and took four months to complete.

Local merchants expressed relief saying it will allow them to bring their goods to market. For the past year residents of the town had to cross the river or take a lengthy detour.

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