The Daily Item
WATSONTOWN — The White Deer Pike in northern Union County has been reopened to traffic as construction continues on the White Deer railroad bridge.
Traffic will be limited to one lane during the day, when necessary, with flagging restrictions as a safety precaution during the construction. Both lanes are open at night.
The detour had been scheduled to be in place until the railroad project was complete. However, a revised schedule for the bridge reconstruction was worked out by the SEDA-COG Joint Rail Authority, PennDOT, the JRA’s bridge engineer, and Lycoming Supply, which is the contractor on the project. The revised schedule allowed the detour to be lifted over three weeks earlier than scheduled.
According to Jeff Stover, executive director of the rail authority, there will be a need to re-impose the detour for about four work days as the project wraps up.
“Setting the steel beams on the bridge will take one or two days,” he said, “probably August 28 and 29.”
Placing the bridge deck itself will require a day as will the final overlay of the roadway. Stover said,
“Every effort will be made to alert the public before the detour is in place again and we’ll do all we can to limit the duration of the detour. The route of the detour will be publicized as well.” The detour which was in place used Route 15 and 44, and Brimmer Avenue; however, the JRA is attempting to seek a shorter, local detour.
The bridge is being reconstructed at a cost of nearly $1 million. As a result of the project, rail service will be available to prospective industrial tenants in the Great Stream Commons Business Park.