Vehicles switch lanes on Route 16 bridge

Shawn Hardy
This is a small sampling of the debris that is piled up around and under the Route 16 bridge due to recent heavy rains and flooding. SHAWN HARDY/ECHO PILOT.

Traffic was switched from the eastbound lane to the rebuilt westbound lane of the Route 16 bridge over the Conococheague Creek west of Greencastle just before 2 p.m. Tuesday.

The eastbound side will now be torn down and reconstructed as the nearly $2.3 million bridge superstructure replacement project reaches the halfway point.

Traffic signals continue to alternate the flow as more than 11,800 vehicles cross the single lane of the bridge every day.

A bridge rehabilitation project was originally planned for summer 2017, but county maintenance workers found cracking and a depression in the deck — the riding surface of the bridge — in late 2016 and the decision was made to replace the bridge.

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation awarded a $2,294,584 contract to Cottle’s Asphalt Maintenance Inc. of Everett, Bedford County.

The project is scheduled to be finished before the end of October. It includes removing and replacing the 77-year-old structurally deficient concrete deck and steel I-beam superstructure, drainage improvements, approach slab and pavement reconstruction and new guardrails, signs and pavement markings.

Once the superstructure is replaced and the road reopens to unrestricted traffic, the will be removed from the list of structurally deficient bridges in Pennsylvania, according to an earlier news release from PennDOT.

Unanticipated work will involved the removal of the "immense" amount of debris that piled up around and under the bridge as a result of recently flooding, according to Alan High, PennDOT's Franklin County construction manager.

The debris includes whole trees 30 to 40 feet long that will probably be taken care of once the bridge construction is finished, High said.