PennDOT officials announce Liberty Bridge repair timeline

PennDOT officials announced an expected reopening date for traffic on the Liberty Bridge after a fire damaged the bridge Friday.
The Liberty Bridge is planned to reopen September 12 once repairs are completed.  The inbound tunnel will reopen Tuesday morning.
The outbound Liberty Tunnel and McCardle Roadway will stay open to traffic.
Approximately 30 feet of a compression chord of the deck truss was damaged after plastic tubing and a tarp caught fire.  The section of the bridge covered by the tarp was in the middle of an $80 million renovation project.
WPXI reports the fire was reaching temperatures over 1200 degrees.  Officials said the bridge was minutes away from collapsing.
PennDOT said crews have inspected the damaged chord and continue to monitor it 24-hours a day.
In a news release,  H. Daniel Cessna, district executive for engineering District 11-0, said crews will start repairs on the bridge Sunday and efforts will continue around-the-clock.
“To accomplish this task, we have local engineering firms SAI and HDR and technical experts within PennDOT, industry and acadamia,” said Cessna.
Penn DOT officials said the temporary repair will start today. In a news release, said, the Herculean .”
“This is not a textbook situation, so in developing a repair procedure is a theoretical debate regarding how to perform this work,” Cessna said.
Approximately 54,000 drivers rely on the Liberty Bridge each day.
PennDOTT posted the following detours:
Northbound (Inbound)
·Take Route 51 (Saw Mill Run Boulevard) northbound
·Take the exit to I-376 West/U.S. 19 South toward Carnegie/Airport/West End
·Take Exit 69A toward U.S. 19 South/Banksville Road
·Keep left and loop back to I-376 eastbound toward Fort Pitt Tunnel
·Follow eastbound I-376 through Fort Pitt Tunnel and across the Fort Pitt Bridge
·For access to I-279 destinations follow I-279 signage, all other destinations take exit toward I-376
East/Monroeville
· Take the left exit 71A to Grant Street
· Turn left onto Grant Street
· End detour
Southbound (Outbound) From Downtown Pittsburgh
· Take Grant Street to I-376
· Take the ramp to West I-376 toward Fort Pitt Bridge/Airport
· Follow I-376 westbound across the Fort Pitt Bridge and through the Fort Pitt Tunnel
· Take Exit 69A toward South 19 Banksville Road
· Keep left and loop back to eastbound I-376
· Take Exit 69B toward South Truck U.S. 19/Route 51 Uniontown
· Merge onto southbound Route 51 and follow back to the Liberty Tunnel
· End detour
Southbound (Outbound) From Westbound Route 885 (Boulevard of the Allies)
· From the Boulevard of the Allies take the ramp to North I-579 to I-279 Veterans Bridge Exit
· Take the Convention Center/7th Avenue Exit
· Turn right onto Grant Street
· Turn left onto 11th Street
· Continue straight onto the 10th Street Bypass
· Take the I-376 West Fort Pitt Bridge/Airport Exit
· Follow I-376 westbound across the Fort Pitt Bridge and through the Fort Pitt Tunnel
· Take Exit 69A toward South 19 Banksville Road
· Keep left and loop back to eastbound I-376
· Take Exit 69B toward South Truck US 19/Route 51 Uniontown
· Merge onto southbound Route 51 and follow back to the Liberty Tunnel
· End detour
Southbound (Outbound) From Route 380 (Bigelow Boulevard)
· From PA 380, take the Consol Center/6th Avenue Exit
· Take the 6th Avenue Exit
· Turn right onto Grant Street
· Turn left onto 11th Street
· Continue straight onto the 10th Street Bypass
· Take the I-376 West Fort Pitt Bridge/Airport Exit
· Follow I-376 westbound across the Fort Pitt Bridge and through the Fort Pitt Tunnel
· Take Exit 69A toward South 19 Banksville Road
· Keep left and loop back to eastbound I-376
· Take Exit 69B toward South Truck US 19/Route 51 Uniontown
· Merge onto southbound Route 51 and follow back to the Liberty Tunnel
· End detour
Southbound (Outbound) From I-279 Parkway North
· From southbound I-279, take the I-279 South Fort Pitt Bridge Exit
· Take the South I-279/To I-376 Fort Pitt Bridge/Airport Exit
· Take the West I-376 Fort Pitt Bridge Exit
· Follow I-376 westbound across the Fort Pitt Bridge and through the Fort Pitt Tunnel
· Take Exit 69A toward South 19 Banksville Road
· Keep left and loop back to eastbound I-376
· Take Exit 69B toward South Truck US 19/Route 51 Uniontown
· Merge onto southbound Route 51 and follow back to the Liberty Tunnel
· End detour

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