MONROE CO., PA – Prior to replacement, Ridgeway Street Bridge, a historic single-span pony truss bridge over the Delaware-Lackawanna Railroad, had a posted weight limit of 13 tons, forcing firetrucks and school buses to detour around the structure. Recently honored by the American Society of Highway Engineers (ASHE) East Penn Section as the 2022 Project of the Year in the under $20 million category, the new 65′ long single-span steel beam replacement better serves the community as a main thoroughfare for pedestrian and vehicular traffic between East Stroudsburg Borough and East Stroudsburg University.
Several safety issues, the poor condition of the structure and the posted weight limit motivated the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation to replace the 88-year-old structure. The Benesch-designed bridge implemented accelerated bridge construction techniques (ABC) utilizing precast concrete substructure units and steel beams with precast concrete deck modules.
“East Stroudsburg University is located near the project site and ABC techniques were utilized to allow bridge construction to be completed during the summer months, minimizing impacts to students and faculty during the fall and spring semesters,” said Senior Project Manager Brian Brawand.
Utilities carried by the original structure were temporarily relocated to a utility bridge located adjacent to the existing and new bridge. This required both careful demolition of the existing bridge and tight clearances for erection of the precast concrete substructure units for the new bridge.
The existing bridge, constructed in 1932, and the Delaware-Lackawanna Railroad both were considered historic. An interpretive panel discussing the Delaware-Lackawanna Railroad and an aesthetic railroad protective fence that mimicked the pony truss were incorporated into the project to meet stakeholder requests to honor the area’s history.
The project was recognized by ASHE East Penn at their annual Project of the Year Awards. Brawand joined members of the project team to accept the award.
“For the engineering community to recognize the Benesch Project Team with a Project of the Year Award is a special bonus that lets us know that we delivered a successful project that exceeded expectations,” said Brawand.