Route 29 Bridge Closes Monday; Two Detours Mapped

PENNSBURG PA – Monday (March 20) looms large – just two days away – as the official closing day for the Route 29 bridge spanning the divide between Pennsburg and Red Hill at 10th and 11th streets. Both boroughs’ websites are assuring their communities that local businesses on either side will remain available and easy to reach.

The bridge is being closed by and rebuilt for the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation to improve traffic flow and increase safety. The $3.2 million construction project it awarded to H&K Group Inc. of Skippack is anticipated to continue through mid-October. The highway will remain open locally up to barriers at the bridge entrances.

Route 29 Bridge Closes Monday; Two Detours Mapped
Route 29 Bridge Closes Monday; Two Detours Mapped
A Thursday afternoon (March 16) skateboarder traveled the bridge sidewalk unimpeded

Because 10th and 11th streets are within the project area, detours for their portions affected by the work have a separate detour map. For the west side of the bridge, it shows the placement of temporary traffic signals on Montgomery Avenue at Walt Road and West 8th Streets. For the east side, it illustrates how to reach 10th Street locations (above) using Runaway Drive, Buck Road, and 8th Street.

For travelers heading north or south on Route 29, the detour in either direction is a lengthy one. It relies on Pennsylvania Routes 73 and 663, which can accommodate the expected flow of vehicles during the seven-month work period.

To address speeding and traffic congestion through the work area, in addition to the temporary signals, PennDOT said the project will also include variable message signs, speed humps, and other safety measures.

On Pennsburg’s side alone, operations of more than 20 businesses might be affected the months-long disruption of traffic flow and associated detours. Its website conveniently listed each of those, along with addresses and links to their websites, so potential customers could keep in touch. It was accompanied by a photo of a large sign that proclaimed “We’re Open!”

Route 29 Bridge Closes Monday; Two Detours Mapped
Among goals of the bridge reconstruction are elimination of existing barriers that have contributed to past accidents

The project calls for removal of the bridge superstructure and its upper portion of the existing Route 29 (also known locally as Main Street) bridge over the former abandoned Perkiomen Railroad. They will make way for “corridor improvements,” PennDOT said, including the elimination of thru-girder beams at the edge of the travel lanes (above). Getting rid of them should “help alleviate crashes,” PennDOT said.

Other improvements include constructing sidewalks along both sides of the roadway to improve pedestrian access; and aged and crumbling sidewalk currently exists now only on the bridge’s east side. Additionally, PennDot is “re-aligning the vertical profile to improve sight distance and reduce rear-end type crashes, and installing upgraded signage, guide rails, and pavement markings.

Given the nature of the work and potential length of the detours, PennDOT is encouraging drivers to allow extra time when traveling near the work area. Backups and delays will occur, it cautioned.

All scheduled activities depend on acceptable weather.

Photos by The Post

Related to this story:

Route 29 Bridge Closing Monday; Detours Mapped
The boroughs of Pennsburg and Red Hill are reminding residents that access to local businesses near the Route 29 bridge, scheduled to close Monday, will remain available during coming months of construction.

Pennsburg Bridge Full Closure Postponed to March 20
In an update on developments involving the Route 29 bridge between Pennsburg and Red Hill, PennDOT said its full closure would be postponed to March 20 (Monday) due to a scheduling change.

Temporary Signals Control Pennsburg Bridge Traffic
PennDOT contractors expect to spend four days, next Tuesday through Friday, installing temporary signals at both ends of the Main Street bridge in Pennsburg. They will control traffic flow during construction.

Work Starts Monday on Pennsburg’s Route 29 Bridge
H&K Group Inc. begins work Monday on the months-long removal and reconstruction of the Main Street bridge between Pennsburg and Red Hill. Travelers should prepare for lane closures now, and other restrictions later.

PennDOT Plans Open House On Route 29 Bridge
The bridge between Pennsburg and Red Hill on Route 29 is scheduled for replacement, with bidding as soon as Fall 2020. How are its plans shaping up, and what does the public think? PennDOT wants to know.