October 12, 2020 – The Chestnut Street bridge over the Schuylkill River in Philadelphia remains closed to all vehicular, pedestrian, and bicycling traffic for the completion of structural steel repairs, redecking and other improvements, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) announced today.
PennDOT closed the 63-year-old eastbound connection between University City and Center City to through-vehicles in August 2019 and began repairs to the north side of the span. The south side of the bridge remained open until May 2020 to pedestrians and bicyclists, and for motorists needing access to the parking lot of the 2400 Chestnut office and residential building while a temporary ramp to the lot was constructed. Once the bridge was fully closed, motorists will access the lot via a temporary ramp from 23rd Street and Chestnut Street.
During the closure, motorists and cyclists heading east from West Philadelphia will be detoured north on either 38th Street, 36th Street or 33rd Street to east on Market Street, then across the river to 23rd Street.
Chestnut Street motorists in the vicinity of 30th Street also may turn left on Schuylkill Avenue to access either eastbound Market Street or John F. Kennedy Boulevard across the river to Center City.
An alternate detour for cyclists will be to take 38th Street or 34th Street south, turn left on Spruce Street, then east on South Street across the river to 22nd Street.
Pedestrians will be detoured to either the Market Street or Walnut Street bridges over the river.
Work on this project will be in accordance with Centers for Disease Control and state Department of Health guidance as well as a project-specific COVID-19 safety plan, which will include protocols for social distancing, use of face coverings, personal and job-site cleaning protocols, management of entries to the jobsite, special signing, and relevant training.
Repairs to the bridge are part of PennDOT’s $103.6 million project that also includes rehabilitation of eight other nearby structures, including those carrying Schuylkill Avenue over I-76 between Walnut Street and Chestnut Street, and between Chestnut Street and Market Street. More information is available at www.chestnutstreetbridges.com.
The Chestnut Street Bridge over the Schuylkill River, which carries approximately 18,664 vehicles per day is expected to reopen in 2021. The current bridge was built in 1957, replacing the original iron arch bridge that was built in 1912.