PennDOT Awards $97.4 Million Contract to Replace Bridges and Improve U.S. 422 in Valley Forge Area

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation today announced that it has awarded a $97.4 million contract to improve U.S. 422 by building new, wider bridges over the Schuylkill River and upgrading the highway between the Route 363 (Trooper Road) and Route 23 (Valley Forge Road) interchanges in West Norriton, Lower Providence and Upper Merion townships, Montgomery County, and Tredyffrin Township, Chester County.

“The awarding of this contract is a significant milestone in the plan to move traffic more efficiently on this heavily congested stretch of U.S. 422 by expanding the aging eastbound and westbound bridges between the Route 363 and Route 23 interchanges, and by improving the highway and ramps in this area,” said PennDOT District Executive Kenneth M. McClain.

“The US 422 improvement project is another example of the positive impact of Act 89, Pennsylvania’s transportation plan,” McClain said. “Without Act 89, this project would not have advanced to construction before 2018.”

Preliminary activities are expected to begin in early February and construction is scheduled to finish in May 2020.

PennDOT’s contractor will build new, wider bridges to carry westbound and eastbound U.S. 422 travelers over the Schuylkill River, Norfolk Southern Railroad, S. Trooper Road and Schuylkill River Trail. The existing structures were built in 1965 and carry an average of 92,000 vehicles a day.

The new, five-span structures will be 785 feet long and have a total width of 146 feet (the bridge’s existing width is 72 feet). When construction is completed, the new bridges will carry six lanes – three westbound and three eastbound. There will be two through lanes in each direction plus a third lane on both sides for drivers to use to travel between the Route 363 (Trooper Road) and Route 23 (Valley Forge Road) interchanges. The new bridges will be wide enough for the possible addition of a third through lane in each direction sometime in the future.

The improvement plan also includes rebuilding one mile of U.S. 422 between the two interchanges, and upgrading the interchanges by: realigning the US 422 east off-ramp to Route 23 (Valley Forge Road) by building a new fly-over ramp; improving the Route 23 (Valley Forge Road) on-ramp to US 422 west; replacing the Route 23 (Valley Forge Road) bridge over US 422; rebuilding 1,500 feet of Route 23 (Valley Forge Road) approaching the US 422 Interchange; improving the US 422 west off-ramp to Route 363 (Trooper Road) and the Route 363 (Trooper Road) on-ramp to US 422 east; and widening the US 422 east off-ramp to First Avenue.

The $97,380,711 contract was awarded to J.D. Eckman, Inc. of Atglen, Chester County. The project is financed with 80 percent federal and 20 percent state funds.

This project is part of the Schuylkill River Crossing Complex of transportation improvement projects designed to enhance travel on US 422 between the Route 363 (Trooper Road) and Route 23 (Valley Forge Road) interchanges. These improvements also include the two additional ramps built to complete the US 422/Route 363 (Trooper Road) Interchange, a project that was finished in December 2015; the construction of a new pedestrian/bicycle trail bridge over the Schuylkill River in Valley Forge National Historical Park, which is scheduled to be completed this summer; and the relocation of North Gulph Road at Route 23 (Valley Forge Road) in Valley Forge National Historical Park, which is expected to move to construction in 2019.

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