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More than $2 million set aside for boulevard bridge

July 20, 2006|by JENNIFER FITCH

WAYNESBORO, Pa. - More than $2 million has been earmarked for an arched bridge spanning the east branch of the Antietam Creek as the early stages of Washington Township Boulevard are built through the end of next year.

A.D. Marble & Co. of Camp Hill, Pa., has been at the site this week conducting a cultural and archaeological study with results expected in the next several months.

"That study will go simultaneously with the bridge type, size and location report," Washington Township Manager Mike Christopher said.

The township supervisors have told engineers Traffic Planning Design of Pottstown, Pa., to proceed with designing a concrete CON/SPAN bridge with three arches, Christopher said. That would be opposed to installing one bridge without arches across the approximately 150 feet, he said.

With arches, "it's structurally stronger (and) has advantages that way," Christopher said.

Alignment of the bridge and supporting roadway was engineered 15 years ago under the guidance of Grove Miller of Harrisburg, Pa., and Martin & Martin of Chambersburg, Pa., Christopher said.

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The next step involved obtaining right of way agreements from property owners.

An agreement has been reached with Barry Pifer and one is in the works with James Teeter, according to Christopher.

A site meeting this spring with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Pennsylvania Department of Education yielded no surprises, Christopher said.

The township received verbal confirmation that only usual and customary permits would be required.

"There was no unique permitting requirements," Christopher said.

He hopes to obtain permits and request bids in late 2006, with a construction start in 2007.

The bridge is part of Washington Township Boulevard, a $14.3 million relief route being built in stages north of Waynesboro.

The section of Washington Township Boulevard from Gehr Road to Country Club Road (west of the bridge) should be completed by the start of bridge construction. The bypass from Old Forge Road to the bridge and an extension of North Welty Road is targeted to be finished by 2007, Christopher said.

Washington Township received $220,000 from Franklin County, Pa., for the bridge "because of the impact of this roadway in relation to economic development (here)," Christopher said. The county feels the relief route will provide access from the north to the Rouzerville Commons shopping center and other nearby businesses, he said.

"We've applied for grant money, additional grants," Christopher said.

In addition to the county funding, the bridge and some of the relief route between Old Forge Road and Country Club Road will be paid for with a $2.5 million Pennsylvania Infrastructure Bank loan, Christopher said. The cost of the section of Washington Township Boulevard between Country Club Road and Gehr Road was made the responsibility of developers.

It has yet to be determined whether Washington Township or the county will be responsible for bridge maintenance, Christopher said.

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