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Decaying Eleanor Street Bridge in Pitcairn is closed

| Wednesday, April 3, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
Lillian DeDomenic | For The Times Express
Elinore Street bridge in Pitcairn slated for repairs. Lillian DeDomenic | For The Times Express
Lillian DeDomenic | For The Tim
Elinore Street bridge in Pitcairn slated for repairs. Lillian DeDomenic | For The Times Express

The Eleanor Street Bridge in Pitcairn will be closed for repairs until further notice.

Borough officials last week discussed options to keep traffic flowing smoothly but came up with no approach that would eliminate the inconvenience of the bridge closure. They plan to meet again to discuss detour options.

“It's going to be a hardship for the people that live here, there's no doubt about that,” said council President John Prucnal, who lives on Eleanor Street.

Officials re-evaluated the condition of the bridge last week.

“The Eleanor Street bridge has deteriorated quite a bit since the fall,” said borough engineer Donald Black. “Unfortunately, I would say my recommendation at this point is to close it.”

Three bridges that span Dirty Camp Run have been deemed as being in poor condition. The Agatha Street bridge deck was recently repaired, but this next fix could be a bit more extensive.

“The substructure is bad … what complicates the matter is the abutments are bad,” Black said.

The main issue is safety, officials said.

“We have an obligation to listen (to Black) because if something does happen … we've got a problem,” Councilman Jack Bova said. “I understand it's a mess, but once the engineer says that the bridge is a hazard and should be closed, I'm certainly not going to say I think we ought to keep it open.”

One option under consideration is to use a temporary bridge in the meantime, the cost of which was estimated at $30,000. That could bring the total repair cost to about $394,000.

“We just don't have that kind of money lying around,” Prucnal said.

Borough leaders also were not sure how long the bridge would be closed.

“If we don't get any funding, it may be a while,” Prucnal said.

However, the repairs should go smoothly once the actual construction starts and last about 90 days, Black said.

Matthew DeFusco is a reporter with Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-871-2311 or mdefusco@tribweb.com.

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