A groundbreaking ceremony last week heralded the start of construction for a new pedestrian bridge across the Los Angeles River in Atwater Village.

The project, part of the Glendale-Hyperion Bridge complex, reuses five concrete piers that previously supported train tracks that shuttled the fabled Pacific Electric Railway's Glendale-Burbank Line across the river.

The $4-million structure, which will span 430 feet between the L.A. River bike path and Glendale Boulevard, is a prelude to a larger slate of upgrades and retrofits to the neighboring bridge complex.  The Eastsider reports that those improvements will begin construction in 2020.

The Atwater Village bridge is one of three new crossings for pedestrians and cyclists set to span across the river in Northeast Los Angeles, including a $19-million structure connecting Frogtown with the Taylor Yard, and a $16.1-million project linking Griffith Park with North Atwater Park.

Despite their relatively modest scale, construction of bridges can proceed slowly on the Los Angeles River due to restricted access to the channel during California's wet season, which runs between October and April.