PennDOT to Begin Project to Replace West Coulter Street Bridge Superstructure Over SEPTA in Philadelphia

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PHILADELPHIA, PA — The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) announced that construction will begin on Tuesday, July 5, on a project to replace the West Coulter Street bridge superstructure over SEPTA’s Chestnut Hill West line in Philadelphia.

Under this project, PennDOT’s contractor will remove and replace the West Coulter Street Bridge superstructure. New concrete material will be placed behind the existing stone masonry abutments to increase their stability. In addition, the catenary system used to supply electricity to the railway system, which is currently attached to the bridge, will be transferred to new catenary towers constructed on either side of the new superstructure.

Other improvements include:

  • Building wider sidewalks on the bridge to enhance pedestrian mobility and safety;
  • Milling and paving the roadway approaches to the bridge; and
  • Replacing the current railing with decorative walls on the inside of the bridge.
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The 121-year-old, 57-foot-long, 49-foot-wide, single-span, two-lane, steel girder bridge was closed between Archer Street and Morris Street in September 2021 due to structural deterioration discovered during a bridge inspection. Prior to closing, the bridge was posted with a 3-ton weight restriction and carried approximately 5,035 vehicles a day.

During construction, West Coulter Street motorists will continue to be directed to Wissahickon Avenue, Chelten Avenue, and Wayne Avenue. Local access will be maintained up to the construction zone. The closure will remain in place until the project completion in Spring 2024.

Motorists are advised to allow extra time when traveling through the work area because backups and delays will occur. All scheduled activities are weather dependent.

Loftus Construction Inc., of Cinnaminson, NJ is the general contractor on the $3.7 million project, which is financed with 100% state funds.

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Motorists can check current road conditions by visiting the MyChesCo Traffic Center.

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