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NH-L bridge sidewalks to stay open during ShadFest


Earlier this year, when the New Hope-Lambertville Toll-Supported Bridge rehabilitation began, residents of both communities voiced concern that the sidewalks would not be open during ShadFest, which is next weekend.

The original project outline called for sidewalks to be closed early in the process because foot traffic is lower in the winter. According to the original timeline, the closures would be lifted in time for the two-day festival, a Greater Lambertville Chamber of Commerce initiative.

According to Joseph F. Donnelly, deputy executive director of communications for the Delaware River Joint Toll Bridge Commission, the contractor on the job “determined the original proposed design schedule to replace the sidewalk before ShadFest could not be met.”

“The contractor re-sequenced the project tasks to have the walkway replacement work take place later in the construction process,” said Donnelly. The change was made by the project contractor, Anselmi & DeCicco Inc. of Maplewood, N.J.

The contractor also determined the goal wasn’t feasible given when replacement material deliveries were expected and because shipping and “processing of railings was fraught with risk.”

“Contractors ultimately determine the ‘means and methods’ of how a project gets carried out, and that’s what happened with this bridge project,” explained Donnelly. “The contractor has developed a plan to install a temporary 6-foot-wide walkway on the road deck, while the current sidewalk gets removed and replaced.”

According to the contractor, a firm with experience in installing temporary sidewalks in New York City, the temporary sidewalk will be 2 feet narrower than the current 8-foot-wide walkway.

Donnelly said this stage in the project, which “will include painting of the bridge’s downstream truss sections, is expected to be the last major construction phase.”

The entire construction project is broken down into four stages.

• Phase 1: anticipated duration, January-May.

• Phase 2: May-July

• Phase 3: July-September

• Phase 4: Ending in fall of 2024

This schedule isn’t set in stone. As with any public works project, Donnelly said, “the new plan and schedule for carrying out the New Hope-Lambertville Bridge Rehabilitation Project is subject to change, due to unappreciable variables like emergencies, supply-chain issues, and severe weather and river conditions.”

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