EAST PIKELAND TWP, PA — The historic Rapps Dam Road Covered Bridge over French Creek in East Pikeland Township, Chester County, is closed indefinitely due to structural damage caused by an oversized vehicle early Saturday morning, July 24, announced the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT).
During the bridge closure, motorists are advised to follow the posted detour of Route 113 (Kimberton Road) and Route 23 (Nutt Road/Schuylkill Road).
Bridge engineers are examining the extent of the structural damage and will develop a plan to repair the covered bridge.
The Rapps Dam Road Covered Bridge over French Creek was originally built in 1866 and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. The bridge is 106 feet long and 14 feet wide. The bridge carried an average of 3,600 vehicles a day.
PennDOT has rehabilitated the historic covered bridge three times since 2011. The most recent repair work finished in April 2018 following a vehicular crash in March 2018.
In fall 2015, PennDOT rehabilitated the historic covered bridge after it was severely damaged by a tractor-trailer in April 2014. The contractor restored the Burr Arch truss, installed new ceiling joists and braces, and replaced wooden cross members on the roof.
In fall 2011, PennDOT completed a rehabilitation project on the bridge by removing and replacing its deteriorated cedar shake roof, redwood siding and timber decking. Crews also replaced four steel beams supporting the bridge deck and repaired the structure’s stone abutments and wing walls.
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