Year-long Chestnut Street Bridge closure kicks off

Year-long Chestnut Street Bridge closure kicks off

Chestnut Street Bridge, which links University City and Center City, is officially closed for the next year. On Monday night, the bridge shut down to pedestrians, cyclists, and motorists to kick off a $103.6 million-dollar reconstruction plan. It is expected to reopen in 2020.

According to a press release from the PennDOT, the project will include construction of wider sidewalks, installation of decorative barrier and railings, replacement of millennium lighting on Chestnut Street over the Schuylkill River, construction of a new trellis at the Chestnut Street Trailhead to the Schuylkill River Trail, and the creation of a dedicated bicycle lane on the north side of Chestnut Street between 34th Street and 22nd Street.

But the improvements come at a cost a year of detours for motorists, cyclists and pedestrians. 

People traveling on foot will be detoured to Market or Walnut street. Cars and cyclists traveling east will be detoured to 36th Street, 38th Street or 33rd Street to east on Market Street, then across the river to 23rd Street. Cars traveling near 30th street can turn left onto Schuylkill Avenue and use the Market Street or John F. Kennedy Boulevard to get too Center City.

Another option for cyclists is to take 34th or 38th Street, turn left onto Spruce Street, east on South Street and travel to 22nd. 

Travelers who take the SEPTA 21 or 42 bus can expect a change in route as well. NBC reported that the 21 bus will stop at 33rd and Chestnut street will be closed until construction is finished. Although all stops will continue for the 42 bus, the route itself has changed slightly, so travelers should check with SEPTA for details. 

Currently, the bridge has about 18,664 people traveling across every day. PennDOT has contracted Buckley & Company, Inc. to handle the project.