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News Release

Governor Wolf Announces Start of Construction on I-76 Viaducts

Mar 25, 2019

King of Prussia, PA – The Wolf Administration announced today that construction will begin Thursday night, April 4, on a project to rehabilitate two Interstate 76 (Schuylkill Expressway) viaducts, including the 6,120-foot-long structure between the Interstate 676 and University Avenue exits in Center City Philadelphia and a 345-foot-long structure over Route 23 and Arrowmink Creek in West Conshohocken, Montgomery County.

“Pennsylvania’s ongoing bridge inspection program has been closely monitoring these heavily-used, 60-plus-year-old structures to ensure that they continue to function as designed,” Governor Tom Wolf said. “Their analysis of the hundreds of structural components that comprise each viaduct points to the need to address the inevitable deterioration now so as to safely handle the demands of tens of thousands of motorists who use the Schuylkill Expressway each day.”

The two-year project will require numerous overnight single lane closures and full closures in one direction at a time, as well as a limited number of weekend daytime single-lane closures or full overnight closures on either the eastbound or westbound expressway in Center City.

For the first two weeks of construction, the contractor will be working on Thursday through Sunday nights on both the eastbound side and westbound side of I-76 in Philadelphia to clear work zone drainage inlets, complete surveying activities, and perform other preliminary work items prior to the start of repairs on the eastbound side of the viaduct that will continue through the end of 2019.

The contractor’s short-term work schedule is:

  • Thursday, April 4, through Sunday, April 7, from 9:00 PM to 5:00 AM the following morning, eastbound I-76 will be reduced to a single lane between the I-676 and University Avenue interchanges; and
  • Thursday, April 11, through Sunday, April 14, from 9:00 PM to 5:00 AM the following morning, alternating eastbound or westbound single lane closures will reduce I-76 to one lane between the I-676 and University Avenue interchanges.

No on- or off-ramps within the work zone are scheduled to be closed during these preliminary construction activities.

Under this project, PennDOT will rehabilitate the 289-span Center City Philadelphia viaduct and the three-span Montgomery County bridge over the 2019 and 2020 construction seasons by repairing or replacing the concrete decks’ expansion joints; repairing deteriorated sections of their concrete decks; rehabilitating numerous piers, columns and other sub-structure components; repairing the viaducts’ drainage systems; and repaving the decks with a concrete overlay.

Repairs to the eastbound side of the Center City viaduct are scheduled to be completed in 2019. Repairs to the westbound side of the Center City viaduct will finish in 2020.

Repairs to the structure in West Conshohocken are expected to begin in May or June 2019 and will be completed by November 2019.  These repairs will be done using single lane overnight closures seven days a week between 9:00 PM and 5:00 AM.

During repairs to the Center City structure, one side of the expressway at a time will be reduced to a single lane or closed completely overnight. In addition, one side of the expressway at a time will be reduced to a single lane during weekend daytime hours a minimum of ten times eastbound (in 2019) and ten times westbound (2020) on non-holiday and select weekends.

Allowable times for these restrictions are as follows:

Weekday Nighttime Single Lane Closures Eastbound or Westbound

  • Monday nights through Friday mornings: 9:00 PM to 5:00 AM

Weekday Nighttime Full Closures Eastbound or Westbound

  • Monday nights through Friday mornings: 11:00 PM to 5:00 AM

Weekend Nighttime Single Lane Closures Eastbound or Westbound

  • Friday nights through Sunday mornings: 9:00 PM to 10:00 AM
  • Sunday nights through Monday mornings: 9:00 PM to 5:00 AM

Weekend Daytime Single Lane Closures Eastbound*

  • Saturday mornings at 10:00 AM to Saturday nights at 10:00 PM
  • Sunday mornings at 10:00 AM to Sunday nights at 9:00 PM

Weekend Nighttime Full Closures Eastbound**

  • Friday nights at 11:00 PM through Saturday mornings at 10:00 AM
  • Saturday nights at 10:00 PM through Sunday mornings at 10:00 AM
  • Sunday nights at 9:00 PM through Monday mornings at 5:00 AM

Weekend Daytime Single Lane Closures Westbound*

  • Saturday mornings at 10:00 AM to Saturday nights at 10:00 PM
  • Sunday mornings at 10:00 AM to Sunday nights at 11:00 PM

Weekend Nighttime Full Closures Westbound**

  • Friday nights at 11:00 PM through Saturday mornings at 10:00 AM
  • Saturday nights at 10:00 PM through Sunday mornings at 10:00 AM
  • Sunday nights at 11:00 PM through Monday mornings at 5:00 AM

* Maximum allowable weekend daytime single lane closures is ten times eastbound and ten times westbound.
** Anticipated weekend overnight full closures is ten times eastbound and ten times westbound.

Overnight right lane and shoulder closures also may occur on the westbound side throughout 2019 and 2020 for construction activities to repair support columns on the underside of the viaduct.

In addition, on and off ramps within the Center City work zone will be closed and detoured in coordination with the scheduled lane restrictions and full closures. Ramps that will be impacted include:

  • University Avenue/Exit 346B Westbound On Ramp
  • University Avenue/Exit 346B Eastbound Off Ramp
  • South Street/Exit 346 Eastbound On Ramp
  • South Street/Exit 346A Westbound On Ramp
  • South Street/Exit 346A Westbound Off Ramp
  • South Street/Exit 346A Eastbound Off Ramp
  • Walnut Street/Exit 345 Eastbound On Ramp
  • I-676/Vine Street Expressway/Exit 344 Westbound Off Ramp

Information about the project, including each week’s planned lane restrictions and/or closings, is available at the project website: www.i76viaduct.com.

J.D. Eckman of Atglen, Chester County, is the general contractor on the 100 percent federally-funded project.