COLUMBIA, Pa. (WHTM) — At the Columbia River Park in Lancaster County on Thursday, Jan. 14, representatives of the Wolf administration highlighted the benefits of the passage of the federal Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL) for Pennsylvania bridges.
One of the bridges that the law will help is the Veterans Memorial Bridge in Lancaster County. The bridge between Columbia and Wrightsville is being renovated in 2023 to collect pedestrians and bicyclists to the Columbia River Park.
“Significant bridges like this across the Susquehanna even a rehabilitation becomes a big lift. $80 million dollars so that’s a lot of money. This is the perfect bridge. It’s a bridge that is important to the community,” Pennsylvania’s Acting Secretary of Highway Administration Mike Keiser said.
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According to a release, Pennsylvania is to receive an estimated $4 billion in new federal highway and bridge dollars over a five-year period. This also includes an estimated $1.6 billion from a new bridge program established by the BIL.
In addition to the new highway and bridge funds, residents will benefit from new federal funds to support public transportation, airports, and rail.
“One of the many benefits of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law is the impact it will have on multimodal projects that connect people to parks and trails, as this rehabilitation project demonstrates,” DCNR Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn said. “We have seen millions of people turn to the outdoors during the pandemic, which is why we are pleased to see federal investments in projects that will help retain those new users.”
Pennsylvania has one of the largest state-maintained highway and bridge networks in the nation, with nearly 40,000 miles of roadways. There are also 25,000 bridges in the Commonwealth, all of which are maintained by PennDOT. That number grows to 120,000 miles of roadways and 32,000 bridges when state and local networks are accounted for.