Nearly 152,000 vehicles drive each day over 16 bridges in Doylestown, Buckingham and New Britain Borough that have been rated "structurally deficient" according to from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation.
Each day this week, we'll focus on a different local bridge that has been rated structurally deficient.
Note: PennDOT spokesman Gene Blaum has said that the rating of "structurally deficient" shouldn't unnecessarily worry drivers. It doesn't mean the bridge is unsafe, he said.
First, we focused on the S. Main Street bridge that passes over the Rt. 202 Bypass.
Next, we looked at the that passes over Pine Run Creek on the northern border of Doylestown.
Today, we're focusing on the bridge that carries Lower State Road over Neshaminy Creek in Doylestown Township.
Construction started this week on the $3.4 million project to replace the crumbling bridge.
Built in 1930, the current bridge was rated structurally deficient, with an overall sufficiency rating of just 17.4 out of 100.
Crews will spend the next 16 months replacing the existing five-span, reinforced concrete T-beam bridge with a new three-span, composite pre-stressed concrete I-beam structure, PennDOT said.
During construction, northbound Lower State Road through traffic will be detoured over Bristol Road, Route 202 (Butler Pike) and Tamanend Avenue. Local access will be maintained up to the construction zone.
The current bridge is 24 feet wide and 212 feet long, PennDOT said. The new structure will be 40 feet wide with two travel lanes and two shoulders. The bridge carries 13,543 vehicles a day.
J.D. Eckman, Inc. is the general contractor on the $3,475,417 project, which is being paid for out of state funds. Construction isn't expected to be finished until August 2012.