Dauphin County-owned Duke Street Bridge, which is located at the intersection of N. Duke Street and South Hoernerstown Road in the Borough of Hummelstown and South Hanover Township, will close to all traffic by 2 p.m. on Tuesday, March 4, 2014 to address critical deficiencies identified during a scheduled monthly check of the structure by the county’s engineer, Herbert, Rowland & Grubic, Inc. The bridge had been under one-lane/one-way traffic restrictions since Monday, April 8, 2013 due to similar deficiencies. The 103-year-old Duke Street Bridge is the county’s last structurally deficient bridge in its 51-bridge inventory and is targeted for replacement in 2015.
In light of the impending thaw, and to minimize the emergency access restriction to the neighborhood, the following corrective action plan is being implemented to address the deficiencies: closing the bridge to all traffic between Hummelstown to South Hanover Township and activating the “Contingency Dispatch and Operational Plan for Hummelstown.”
The Dauphin County Emergency Management Agency worked with Hummelstown and South Hanover Township officials, emergency management coordinators, emergency medical services, the Hummelstown Borough Police Department and Norfolk Southern to develop a contingency plan for response to any emergency that might occur in the rare instance when a train stops in the borough while the Duke Street Bridge is closed. All stakeholders are familiar with the contingency plan and are aware of their own responsibilities for its successful execution.
It is anticipated that the bridge will remain closed until mid-April, when temporary repairs will be completed (weather permitting) and the prior one-lane traffic restriction will be reinstated and remain in place until the bridge is permanently closed and demolished as part of the $3.5-million-replacement project that is expected to begin in 2015. During this time, the county’s engineer will continue to monitor the bridge’s condition. If periodic inspections detect further degradation of the structure, it is possible that a complete closure of the bridge could re-occur before 2015.
(Source: Dauphin County)