by Lisa Tome
It appears that the Pennsylvania Navy has missed major road work on Route 272.
At least for this year.
State Highway Administration officials confirmed Friday that the replacement of the bridge on Mauldin Avenue (Route 272) over Amtrak has been pushed back.
"They've not given us much past September. We heard the advertisement date for a contractor was pushed to August. They've also indicated that it's been pushed back even more," said North East town administrator Melissa Cook-MacKenzie. "It looks like it will get us into 2014. It's normal to take this long."
The bridge over Amtrak was built in 1954. The new bridge will provide two lanes of traffic, wider shoulders, and sidewalks to accommodate bicycle and pedestrian traffic.
Initially, a plan had the road closed along Route 272. After public meetings were held, it was decided that at least one lane of the roadway will remain open. There may be times when drivers have to wait, such as when material is being brought to the site.
In addition to the bridge replacement, the project will include the addition of a left turn lane for southbound Route 272 at the intersection of North Main and Russell streets. Sidewalks will also be built from Russell Street to the entrance of the North East Station shopping center.
As of late last week, State Highway and Amtrak officials are working together on coordination issues. "Resolving issues with Amtrak relative to obtaining a construction agreement with Amtrak and a right of entry permit has delayed our schedule, said SHA spokesman Charlie Gischlar.
This engineering project funds were granted in 2002. The engineering work for this project is $2 million. Construction costs are projected to be $12.6 million. Federal and state money will be used to pay the costs.