The state has lowered its number of structurally deficient bridges, repairing more than 1,500 state-owned bridges from 2008 to 2013.
Three in a series explaining Pennsylvania’s structurally deficient bridges.
Is anyone trying to fix Pennsylvania’s bridges?
Yes. The state has lowered its number of structurally deficient bridges, repairing more than 1,500 state-owned bridges from 2008 to 2013. PennDOT used a combination of federal and state funds to make those repairs, including money from the federal American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.
In November 2013, Governor Tom Corbett signed Act 89, a law that funds transportation and infrastructure repairs around the state. The law removed the cap on a fuel tax, which will raise the price of gasoline at the pump by an estimated $2.50 a week for the average driver by 2018. It also raises vehicle registration and driver’s license fees, pegging them to inflation.
Under Act 89, the state will get an additional $200 million to invest in roads and bridges this year. That money will allow PennDOT to remove weight restrictions from more than 100 state and locally owned bridges in 2014.
The amount of funding will increase incrementally. By 2018, the state will have an additional $1.5 billion a year to invest in roads and bridges.
The state will repair and replace a number of bridge repairs under Act 89. In Mercer County, it plans to replace the closed Livermore Bridge on Route 2005. It plans to restore the Buttonwood Street Bridge in Reading. The state is also planning to replace the Vine Street Expressway Bridges in Philadelphia and rehabilitate the Birmingham Bridge in Pittsburgh. More planned bridge repairs are described here.
PennDOT will also use public-private partnerships to replace 558 of the state’s structurally deficient bridges. Read more about that program here.
Did this article answer all your questions about Pennsylvania’s structurally deficient bridges? If not, you can reach Marielle Segarra via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or through social media @MarielleSegarra. Have a topic on which you’d like us to do an Explainer? Let us know in the comment section below, or on Twitter @PaCrossroads.