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Construction Update

Cottman Avenue Interchange Construction Update: Spring 2016

Mar 30, 2016

Continuing Northbound Reconstruction, Widening at Cottman Interchange

Spring 2016 -- Reconstruction and widening of northbound Interstate 95 at the Cottman Avenue Interchange in Northeast Philadelphia continues to progress with crews this spring completing overhead bridges and construction of long retaining walls along a 1.4 mile work zone that stretches from Levick Street to Bleigh Avenue.

Current construction is the third major stage of work under PennDOT’s $212 million project to rebuild and improve the interchange and adjoining sections of I-95.

New concrete decks are in place or under construction for the northbound section of bridges over Bleigh Avenue, Cottman Avenue, Princeton Avenue, New State Road, Longshore Avenue, Unruh Avenue and Magee Avenue. Bridge construction is progressing generally from north to south, with crews setting bridge deck beams, placing reinforcing steel and pouring concrete decks for each span.

At Princeton Avenue, crews are building a two-span overpass. One span extends over the northbound on-ramp while the adjacent span passes over what will be an extension of Princeton Avenue as a separate, eastbound only road between Torresdale Avenue and Milnor Street. The extension of Princeton Avenue, which also will include new sidewalks and LED pedestrian lighting, will give residents easier access to the Delaware River front.

Like at Princeton Avenue, all the new bridges will have decorative abutment walls depicting various icons that define the adjacent neighborhoods. LED (light emitting diode) lighting also is being installed at the underpasses, all part of the quality-of-life enhancements that came about as the result of interaction between PennDOT and the community Sustainable Action Committee (SAC) that met during the project’s design phase.

Lengthy retaining walls are in place along the northbound lanes in most areas from north of Bleigh Avenue to New State Road. These  “T” walls utilize pre-cast concrete panels that are stacked and backfilled to stabilize the embankment supporting I-95 northbound widening between the overpasses.

Crews will begin construction this spring of I-95's new, widened northbound lanes between the seven bridges once deck construction has been completed. Roadway construction will continue through the summer.

On the west side of I-95, crews continue the relocation of a large water main in the area south of Cottman Avenue once occupied by a section of Wissinoming Street. Once the water line is installed and functioning, the old main will be removed, a new sewer main will be installed in its place, and work will begin on foundations for the new on-ramp to I-95 south from Cottman Avenue. This work will continue into 2017. Cottman Avenue east of State Road already has been widened to provide access to the new ramp.

When completed in 2017, the Cottman Avenue Interchange project will provide four through lanes between the Cottman Avenue and Bridge Street interchanges. Construction on I-95 at the Cottman Avenue Interchange began in fall 2012.

Walsh Construction Company of Canonsburg, Pa. is the general contractor on the $212.3 million contract, which at the time was the largest single construction contract in PennDOT history.

Since the start of construction on the current phase of the Cottman Avenue Interchange Improvement Project (CP2) in 2013 (the second of PennDOT’s overall two-part project at the interchange), crews widened and rebuilt most of the southbound side of the interstate and seven bridges. A second stage of the current project that finished in late July completed construction of a fourth southbound lane and rebuilt the center section of the bridges.  A final construction stage will complete reconstruction of I-95’s median in 2017.