The new bridge and new roadway alignment for Park Avenue over the Norfolk Southern railroad tracks opened to traffic this morning just before 8 a.m. Park Avenue is also officially designated as Route 743 through Derry Township, Dauphin County – also known as Hershey. The new bridge and new alignment are situated to the east of the old bridge and former roadway alignment, near the entrance for the Zoo America.
This work is part of a $12 million construction project started at the end of 2010 to realign the dog-legged intersection between Route 743 and Route 422 in downtown Hershey, build pedestrian underpasses under Route 422 and also under Route 743 near the zoo, and build a new bridge over the railroad tracks on a new alignment to replace the structurally deficient bridge on the former alignment for Route 743 (Park Avenue) north of Route 422. The intersection realignment on Route 422 was completed last year. The new bridge over the Norfolk Southern railroad tracks is nearly finished – the roadway approaches still need final paving before mid-October. Demolition of the old Route 743 bridge over the railroad tracks can now begin. The overall construction contract which PennDOT has with the Trumbull Corporation of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, should wrap up by the end of November.