DRPA approves US$ 139 million Walt Whitman Bridge refurbishment

By Richard High24 May 2010

Preliminary work on the 53 year-old Walt Whitman Bridge will begin in August and the project should

Preliminary work on the 53 year-old Walt Whitman Bridge will begin in August and the project should be completed by the end of the summer of 2014.

The DRPA (Delaware River Port Authority) has approved a US$ 139 million deck refurbishment for the Walt Whitman Bridge, the largest capital improvement project it has ever undertaken.

Of the US$ 139 million project costs, American Bridge Company of Coraopolis, Pennsylvania was awarded a US$ 128 million construction contract and the Urban Engineers Inc./URS Corporation joint venture received a US$ 11.7 million construction monitoring contract.

The re-decking project includes the removal of the suspended span, installation of a new lightweight concrete filled jointless grid deck, structure improvements, new parapets and a new steel shell movable barrier.

Preliminary work will begin in August and the project should be completed by the end of the summer of 2014.

Walt Whitman Bridge - Facts & figures

  • Owned by the Delaware River Port Authority
  • Construction started in August 1953
  • Opened to traffic May 16, 1957
  • In 2009, 40 million vehicles crossed the bridge
  • River/waterway crossing the Delaware River
  • Location: Gloucester NJ/Philadelphia PA
  • Width (out to out): 92 ft 2" (28 m)
  • Travel width (curb to curb): 79 ft (24 m)
  • Number of lanes: 7
  • The bridge does not have railroad/transit tracks
  • Length (abutment to abutment): 11981 ft (3.65 km)
  • Navigable channel width: 800 ft (244 m)
  • Navigable channel depth: 40 ft (12.2 m)
  • Foundation type: caisson (main piers), and piles (approach piers)
  • Type of connection: weld (shop) and bolt (field)
  • Roadway surface: asphalt
  • Type of paint: urethane alkyd
  • Structural steel weight: 57674 tons (52430 tonnes)

Walt Whitman (May 31, 1819 - March 26, 1892) was an American poet, essayist, journalist, and humanist.

His most well known poetry collection, Leaves of Grass, was first published on July 4, 1855 and includes Song of Myself and I Sing the Body Electric.

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