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Ambridge-Aliquippa Bridge opens

| Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2012, 5:31 p.m.

After more than eight months of being closed, Thursday night marked the first time since early March drivers were able to cross the Ambridge-Aliquippa Bridge, PennDOT spokesman Jim Struzzi said.

The bridge originally was expected to open in the afternoon, but equipment breakdown and cold temperatures forced PennDOT officials to wait until 8:30 p.m., Struzzi said.

But the bridge won't be free of closures yet.

“After the bridge is reopened to traffic, short-term lane closures will continue as needed through winter,” Struzzi said.

The bridge will close again in March 2013 through fall to complete the project.

The bridge will remain closed to pedestrians through winter. The sidewalk has been temporarily removed for improvements.

The opening Thursday is weather-permitting.

Nearly 12,600 drivers cross the bridge daily, Struzzi said.

The bridge connects Route 51 to 11th Street in Ambridge and runs above Route 65 and the Ohio River.

The $16.6 million project to rehabilitate the ten-span structure includes rehabilitation, deck and sidewalk replacement, concrete spall repair, steel repair and replacement, railing, structural steel painting, bituminous pavement patching, pavement markings and other improvements.

Bobby Cherry is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-324-1408 or rcherry@tribweb.com.

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