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Construction Update

Cottman Avenue Interchange Status: Fall 2015

Sep 30, 2015

Northbound Reconstruction at Cottman Interchange

November 2015 - Reconstruction and widening of the northbound section of Interstate 95 at the Cottman Avenue Interchange in Northeast Philadelphia is underway, including the widening of the northbound side of seven bridges 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.

Cews have removed much of the old northbound concrete pavement and demolished the east side of bridges over New State Road and over Bleigh, Cottman, Princeton, Longshore, Unruh and Magee avenues. Those spans are now in varying stages of reconstruction, with abutment construction taking place at a number of spans and deck construction underway at others.

In addition to bridge work, long stretches of retaining wall also are being built to support and reinforce embankments that will be built to widen the northbound pavement. Bridge and retaining wall work will to continue through mid-2016.

The new bridges all 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.

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.

Surface Street Work at Cottman

Northbound reconstruction will impact travel on several surface streets adjacent to I-95.
Flagger controlled restrictions will continue on Bleigh Avenue as crews complete work to replace train rails that serve the industrial area east of I-95.  Further east on Bleigh, work continues on stormwater drainage outlets at the river.

Work at the Princeton Avenue bridge will continue to reduce Milnor street to a single lane in each direction. Along with reconstruction of the bridge, crews eventually will punch through the embankment to extend eastbound Princeton Avenue through to Milnor Street once the bridge is completed.

In addition, construction of retaining walls and bridges will impact New State Road, Longshore Avenue and other streets along the east side of I-95 as work extends south.

On the west side of I-95, installation of a large water main continues in the area south of Cottman Avenue once occupied by a section of Wissinoming Street. A new on-ramp to I-95 south from Cottman Avenue will be built at this location when the subsurface work finishes.  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 is the largest single construction contract in PennDOT history.