HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – About a dozen bridge projects are getting ready to kick off throughout the Midstate.
The 63rd Street Bridge in Swatara Township closed at 9 p.m. Wednesday. It’s expected to remain shut down until mid-November for people traveling from Derry Street to Grayson Road. One lane of the bridge, from Grayson Road to Derry Street, will remain open while work is done on the other lane.
“All the concrete has fallen off the face of it, and that’s what you see down at the base,” said Jan LeBlanc, Swatara Township manager.
Construction will happen at the base and other parts of the bridge in a more than $1 million project.
“The contractors will be working up on the deck of the bridge, and that’s where cars actually travel,” LeBlanc said. “They will be cleaning out and correcting the deficiencies in the expansion joints.”
PennDOT is also working on bridge projects, including one along Elmerton Avenue over Interstate 83. Delays along I-83 in the area of this bridge are expected to start within two weeks. Traffic will be stopped for 10 to 15 minutes.
“It’ll occur between midnight and five in the morning. They’ll have rolling road blocks and slow traffic so they can safely put each beam on the abutments in the pier as they build the new bridge,” said Greg Penny, spokesperson with PennDOT.
The Elmerton Avenue Bridge construction is part of a larger project to widen Interstate 83. Crews will work on bridges at Route 22 and Union Deposit, but one lane will remain open on those bridges. The Elmerton Avenue Bridge is getting completely replaced.
Almost a dozen Midstate bridges will be replaced in September for PennDOT’s Rapid Bridge Replacement Program. $1 billion will be spent to replace more than 500 bridges in the state, including 91 in Central Pennsylvania.
“Probably by the end of this fall, we’ll have 30 bridges under construction that will be replaced and no longer be considered or classified as structurally deficient,” Penny said.
“We’ve seen other bridges in [the] United States collapse, and I think we don’t want to see that happen here.”
Those PennDOT and Swatara Township ask for patience during the projects.
“We’ve seen other bridges in United States collapse, and I think we don’t want to see that happen here,” LeBlanc said.
For more information, including locations, of the Rapid Bridge Replacement Project, click here.