Jun 28, 2012

A Bridge Still Stands

Last night, Glenn Solt, project manager for Lehigh County, came to the county committee meeting prepared with a twelve page report, and the engineer who wrote it. They testified that the condition of the Reading Road Bridge has deteriorated, the cost of repairing it has increased, but that the cost of replacing it has gone down. Solt's determined to rid Union Terrace of that old stone arch bridge. Never mind that it was completely rehabilitated in 1980, 156 years after it was built in 1824. Never mind that Hamilton Street Bridge is a quarter block north, and a new Union Street Bridge is being built a half block south.
Michael Molovinsky, an Allentown blogger who has previously written about the bridge, accused the county of exaggerating the condition of the bridge and the cost for rehabilitating it rather than replacing it. Molovinsky said the bridge's historic value is irreplaceable, "Let me be frank: Mr. Solt has no feel for history whatsoever," Molovinsky said. "... This bridge cannot be replaced. It's that simple." Colin McEvoy/The Express Times/June28,2012
This was the first bridge built west of Allentown, crossing Cedar Creek, on the route west to Reading, and one of the last remaining stone arch bridges. Although I would like to see a stake driven through the project, technical legalese demands that I periodically appear and defend our history and culture. The bridge replacement funds were approved years ago, and the matter at hand is a small contract for engineering studies.


Anonymous said...

Well whatever goes on with this bridge is upsetting but Shriber's now shows its underpinning wire structure: a result of endless vehicular damage as the 15th Street Bridge remains untouched. What happens to traffic once Shribers is destroyed?

michael molovinsky said...

the burden on schreibers is indeed worrisome, and will double when the 15th street bridge is completely closed for replacement. i have mentioned this to pawlowski, and noted such on this blog. both the city and county are preoccupied with new ribbon cuttings, as opposed to maintenance. solt replaced the 7 defective bridges in lehigh county, and now is on his 15th bridge project, with no regard to anything but the ribbon cuttings. bureaucrats gone wild!

Anonymous said...

"Never mind that Hamilton Street Bridge is a quarter block north, and a new Union Street Bridge is being built a half block south."

If Walnut is one block south of Hamilton and one block north of Union how is it a quarter or half block from either?

michael molovinsky said...

walnut street, aka reading road, is not parallel at that point at union terrace. rather than question the language, why not drive yourself over there and view the history.

Anonymous said...

If Walnut, which it still at this point until the intersection, veers a tad north, won’t that make it more than a block north of Union? Not sure where your “half” block comes from. Facts matter?

michael molovinsky said...

@3:38, how long is a block? are blocks the same length everywhere? do you have an opinion about whether or not the bridge should be retained or replaced?

Bill said...

I do not want this bridged replaced

Anonymous said...

The bridge is toast --- all my constituents and I can easily see this.

It's all part of the plan.

But, who really cares? When is the first ice hockey game at the record-smashing Palace of Sport?


Anonymous said...

Shribers Bridge is being pummeled into rubble.

The 15th St Bridge remains closed northbound .

These are third world condishions.

Where is City Council on this disgrace?