Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Construction on Montco trail bridge to begin

LOWER MERION TWP. Construction on a bridge that will connect the Cynwyd Heritage Trail to Philadelphia's Manayunk neighborhood is set to begin this summer, a Lower Merion Township official said.

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation awarded a $4.2 million contract last week to A.P. Construction Inc. of Blackwood, N.J., to helm the project, said Chris Leswing, Lower Merion Township assistant director of planning.

Other funders include the township, Philadelphia, and the county.

The Cynwyd Heritage Trail, which opened in 2012, runs from the Cynwyd SEPTA station to Rock Hill Road. Near the middle of the trail is a spur to the Manayunk Bridge, which has been closed to the public. That spur will open after the bridge is paved, an ornamental fence is built along the sides, and other improvements are made, Leswing said.

The trail will end up at the intersection of Dupont and High Streets in Manayunk, not far from the Main Street commercial district.

The work is scheduled to begin in July and will take up to 15 months.

"We have been looking forward to extending the Cynwyd Trail over the Schuylkill River ever since we started to redevelop the Cynwyd Trail and the SEPTA Cynwyd train station in 2007," said Bob Duncan, Lower Merion building and planning director.

The half-mile Manayunk Bridge opened in 1918 and was last used as a crossing for trains in 1986.

- Carolyn Davis

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