Pier Construction Continues for Ramp Improvements to B. Ross Bridge/Aramingo Interchange
Fall 2015 - Construction to improve the Interstate 95 interchange at the Betsy Ross Bridge/Aramingo Avenue Interchange has expanded to include work in the center and on both sides of I-95 as well as embankment and ramp construction west of Aramingo Avenue. Current construction at the interchange is being done under the first of three contracts to improve access between I-95, Aramingo Avenue and the Betsy Ross Bridge and rebuild and widen almost one mile of I-95 — and its bridges — adjacent to the interchange.
While much of the work on the $160.2 million project is taking place within the sprawling ramp complex west of I-95 adjacent to the southbound lanes, construction also is taking place in the median and along the northbound lanes on the east side of the interstate. Crews at all three locations are building columns and piers that will support new and upgraded ramp connections to and from I-95, the Betsy Ross Bridge and Aramingo Avenue.
On the west side of Aramingo Avenue, a support pier and a large embankment — which will connect to several other piers on the opposite side — are in place. A new ramp to the bridge will be built atop those support structures and embankment. That construction will require closing the on-ramp to I-95 south from Aramingo Avenue in December. Traffic will be detoured to the southbound on ramp at Allegheny Avenue.
Pier construction in the median and on the east side of I-95 at the interchange eventually will carry a new ramp from the bridge to Aramingo Avenue. The stub of the un-completed ramp is being demolished and modified as part of that new ramp.
In the area immediately west of I-95 — where work continues on numerous structures that will support widening and replacement of some of the existing ramps at the interchange — a lengthy box culvert that will carrying storm water runoff to outlets in the adjacent Frankford Creek remains under construction.
PennDOT will maintain three travel lanes in each direction on I-95 at the interchange during construction; however, overnight lane closures may occur during traffic pattern changes and for stages of construction in the center of the interstate.
PennDOT’s contractor will work through fall 2017 to rebuild most of the existing ramps at the interchange and to build new ramps to connect the bridge and Aramingo Avenue. That work includes:
• Constructing a new ramp to carry westbound traffic from the Betsy Ross Bridge over I-95 to Aramingo Avenue;
• Building a new ramp to carry Aramingo Avenue traffic to the Betsy Ross Bridge;
• Widening the bridge on the ramp carrying northbound I-95 traffic to Aramingo Avenue;
• Widening and replacing the bridge deck on the ramp over Aramingo Avenue, Conrail and Frankford Creek that carries Aramingo Avenue traffic to I-95 South;
• Relocating and replacing the ramp carrying southbound traffic over I-95 to the Betsy Ross Bridge;
• Rehabilitating the bridge on the ramp carrying southbound I-95 traffic to Aramingo Avenue; and
Widening and replacing the bridge deck over Aramingo Avenue that carries traffic from the northbound and southbound I-95 and westbound Betsy Ross Bridge to Aramingo Avenue.
In addition to relocating the storm sewer culvert, the initial contract includes installation of new traffic signals along Richmond Street in the vicinity of the interchange; relocating Philadelphia Gas Works’ gas mains under abandoned Thompson Street; relocating PECO Energy underground electric lines under abandoned Thompson Street and removing the abandoned Thompson Street bridge over Frankford Creek.