The purpose of the project is to provide a crossing of White Clay Creek that is capable of accommodating the existing and expected pedestrian and vehicular traffic on PA 41 and that improves or maintains the hydraulic opening for White Clay Creek.
Structure condition: The existing two-span bridge, a reinforced concrete T-beam and concrete-encased steel I-beam structure over White Clay Creek, is in poor condition. The structure exhibits advanced section loss, deterioration, spalling, and scour. Structural items that contribute to this condition are as follows:
System Linkage/Connectivity: The PA 41 corridor serves as one of the main long-haul freight corridors in the region for cargo shipments generated by the Port of Wilmington in Delaware and heading west and north to Lancaster, Harrisburg, and destinations beyond. The crossing is also one of only two within the Borough that link residents to points south. The bridge has recently been posted with a 27 tons (40 tons combination) weight restriction and the associated truck detour is adversely impacting the delivery of goods and freight. Prior to the weight restriction, the bridge had an average daily traffic (ADT) of 18,763 which included an average daily truck traffic (ADTT) of 2,439.
Flooding: The FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Map shows that flow is overtopping PA 41 in the near and far approach roadway of the project bridge. Avondale borough is frequently inundated by flood waters from the confluence of the East Branch of the White Clay Creek, Trout Run, and Chatham Run.
Both the PA 41 Bridge White Clay Creek and the adjacent PA 41 at State Street Intersection project are located within the Avondale Historic District, which was determined eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places in 2001.
Since the bridge is considered a contributing element to the historic district, the design team will complete a bridge rehabilitation analysis to determine if the bridge can be repaired in a manner that satisfies the project’s purpose and need. If the analysis determines that rehabilitation is not possible or that the work to rehabilitate would be so extensive that it would result in an adverse effect to cultural resources, the documentation will be compiled into a report that will be shared with Section 106 consulting parties for review and comment.