Bucks County recently re-opened the Walnut Street Bridge – Bridge No. 13 – in Perkasie Borough after over a year of construction. The bridge was taken out of service in October 2017 to initiate the bridge replacement project. Bucks County Bridge No. 13 was previously reconstructed in 1907 (original crossing built in 1867) and was a three-span, concrete arch structure with spans of approximately 65 feet. The bridge carried two lanes of traffic and a sidewalk along the upstream fascia.Carroll Engineering Corporation (CEC) designed the new bridge with a total length of over two hundred feet (200′) comprising of a three-span, composite, continuous for live load, prestressed adjacent box beam bridge. The bridge has individual spans of approximately 70 feet and an out-to-out width of approximately 49 feet. The bridge carries two lanes of traffic and sidewalks along both sides of the bridge. The bridge substructures consist of reinforced concrete wall piers and cantilever abutments founded on spread footings. The new bridge also incorporates decorative lighting and colored stone formliner for aesthetic and context sensitive purposes. Four plaques have been installed at the bridge site commemorating the original 1867 bridge, 1907 reconstructed bridge, 1970 rehabilitated bridge and the new structure. Other significant aspects of the construction include reconstruction of the approach roadway, new vehicular and pedestrian signals, new retaining walls, ADA ramps, guiderail and curbing, sidewalk and drainage improvements.
Bridge No. 13 is one of 115 owned and maintained by the County of Bucks and its General Services division.
East Bradford Township contracted with CEC to investigate the overall bridge condition of Broad Run Bridge and perform an Alternatives Analysis including options for bridge repair, bridge rehabilitation or bridge replacement. After consideration, the Township Board of Supervisors elected to replace the bridge in its entirety and hired CEC to perform the necessary design and permitting services for a new bridge crossing. CEC worked closely with Township officials and designed a new, precast concrete arch structure along with roadway and safety improvements. Context-sensitive design aspects that were incorporated into the project included brown, powder-coated guiderail and stained, stone formliner treatment. CEC also performed construction administration and oversight on the project. Another positive of the project is that the waterway opening of the bridge was able to be significantly increased which lessened the frequency of flooding in a very flood prone area of the Township. The completed project complements the bucolic setting of the surrounding countryside.
Both bridges have a design service life of over 100 years and will be enjoyed for generations to come.