Construction Update

BSR Construction Update: Spring 2024

Southbound Reconstruction to Start This Spring

April 9, 2024 – Reconstruction of the southbound lanes (Stage 2) of Interstate 95 at the Bridge Street Interchange in Northeast Philadelphia gets underway this spring as utility and drainage work continue on surface streets surrounding the interchange.

With the retaining wall in place along the northbound side of I-95 south of the interchange (see below) and embankment supports in place along Tacony Street north of Bridge Street, temporary paving will be placed through the work zone prior to a traffic shift that will move six lanes of I-95 traffic to the east between Margaret and Carver streets.

The shift this spring will free the southbound lanes through the work zone, allowing PennDOT’s contractor to begin rebuilding that side of the interstate. The temporary traffic pattern will remain in place for the duration of the project. When southbound reconstruction is completed, the traffic pattern will shift to the west side of the work area for reconstruction of the northbound side of I-95.

During Stage 2 reconstruction of the southbound I-95 pavement:

  • Southbound Tacony Street will remain one lane between Van Kirk Street and Aramingo Avenue.
  • A short section of Tacony Street adjacent to southbound I-95 will be closed and detoured along Aramingo Avenue to Orthodox Street.
  • Bridge Street will be reduced to one lane eastbound, and its adjacent sidewalk closed between James Street and Ramsay Road.

The southbound off-ramp to James Street will remain open until May when it will be closed for reconstruction of the southbound side of the interchange. A new southbound off-ramp will then be constructed in its place that will pass under I-95 to a new signalized interchange complex on Tacony Street north of Bridge Street. That new intersection will also accommodate a new northbound on-ramp that will be built during the next stage of the BS2 project. The existing northbound on-ramp from Bridge Street will remain open until the new on-ramp is in place.

The original northbound I-95 off-ramp to Bridge Street (Exit 27) was permanently closed in April 2023 for construction at the interchange. Off-ramp traffic is now exiting at the Betsy Ross Bridge Interchange and following Aramingo Avenue north back to Bridge Street.

When the James Street ramp is closed, traffic heading for Bridge Street will detour to the Aramingo Avenue exit at the adjacent Betsy Ross Bridge Interchange and follow Aramingo Avenue north back to Bridge Street.

A significant part of I-95 reconstruction at the interchange includes replacement of the existing viaduct over Bridge and Tacony streets. Work has been underway since last fall on the new southbound section of the span, with support piers in place adjacent to I-95 along Aramingo Avenue (see right, below).

In addition to replacing the viaduct, Section BS2 will reconstruct I-95 between Margaret Street and Carver Street and replace the bridge over Fraley Street. The Carver Street overpass will be replaced by a new bridge over the new southbound off-ramp that will replace the James Street off-ramp. A new on-ramp to I-95 north will be built at the Tacony Street interchange.

Section BS2 is the second of five contracts to reconstruct the interstate and improve the interchange at Bridge Street. PennDOT completed Section BS1 reconstruction to rebuild and widen the I-95 pavement between Levick Street and Carver Street in early 2023.

During all upcoming work on Section BS2, three travel lanes in each direction will remain open during peak travel times, though periodic off-peak lane closures may be in place on I-95 during certain stages of construction operations. However, a number of different traffic patterns will be in place on the surface streets at the interchange (Bridge Street, Tacony Street, Aramingo Avenue) during BS2 construction.

Section BS2 is scheduled to be completed in late 2026.

James J. Anderson Construction, of Philadelphia, is the general contractor on Section BS2, which is valued at $268 million.