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Liberty Bridge’s 3-year rehab ‘complete,’ but minor work ongoing through January |

Liberty Bridge’s 3-year rehab ‘complete,’ but minor work ongoing through January

The Liberty Bridge has been undergoing an $81 million construction project for three years.

The bulk of the three-year rehabilitation of Pittsburgh’s Liberty Bridge has been completed, PennDOT officials said.

Drivers, however, should anticipate periodic single-lane restrictions through late January as crews continue to make various minor improvements to the bridge, its sidewalks and infrastructure, PennDOT spokesman Steve Cowan said Tuesday.

Remaining “punch list” tasks include sealing sidewalks and replacing a damaged pedestrian railing on Boulevard of the Allies that a driver hit last month, Cowan said. The railing had been installed for about a month before it was hit. PennDOT has said it will seek reimbursement for the $30,000 new railing from the driver who hit it.

The broader project was originally scheduled to be completed in July. Unforeseen steel repairs, added sidewalk work and bird-screen installation pushed the end date to Aug. 26 , Cowan told the Trib in July.

In September 2016, the bridge caught fire and was closed for weeks. An investigation found West Deer-based Joseph B. Fay did not practice proper fire safety measures.

The rehabilitation project’s price tag has climbed to $81.8 million — up from its original estimate of $80.1 million when the project began in August 2015.

PennDOT added work to the project’s scope, including installing large concrete blocks known as a pedestal extensions to the bridge support system on Boulevard of the Allies. The extensions will require trucks to make larger turns to avoid hitting the bridge structure, Cowan said.

PennDOT also asked contractors to pressure-wash the decorative sandstone above the Boulevard of the Allies retaining wall.

The bridge is used by about 42,000 vehicles a day, PennDOT records show.

Natasha Lindstrom is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Natasha at 412-380-8514, [email protected] or via Twitter @NewsNatasha.

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