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Commissioners to Mark Reopening of Perkasie's Walnut Street Bridge

November 14, 2018

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Larry R. King, 215.348.6413, lrking@buckscounty.org

The Bucks County Commissioners will join members of Perkasie Borough Council and the local community on November 21 to celebrate the opening of the reconstructed Walnut Street Bridge.

For those who live, work and do business in Perkasie, this is no ordinary ribbon-cutting. The Walnut Street Bridge, which has been closed since October 2017, is a vital transportation artery for businesses, commuters, visitors and first responders who serve the vibrant, revitalizing borough.  

“The impact of the bridge opening on our residents really can’t be overstated,” said Jim Purcell, Perkasie Borough Council Vice President. “Wide sidewalks ease pedestrian and bicycle access between Perkasie’s beautiful park trails and our residential and business districts. The comfort of knowing that first responders have a direct route restored in case of an emergency is huge, and the relief on surrounding roads and detours will be immediate as traffic diverts back to Walnut Street.” Walnut St Bridge

The new, $5.1 million bridge is one of 114 owned and maintained by Bucks County and its General Services Division. Eighty percent of the cost will be reimbursed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

The rebuilt bridge is the fourth incarnation of a span that has crossed the East Branch of the Perkiomen Creek since 1867. It is approximately 210 feet long and 49 feet wide, will carry two lanes of traffic and will have sidewalks on both sides.

In recognition of the bridge’s significance to the Perkasie community and the county at large, the County Commissioners have relocated their regular 10 a.m. meeting on Nov. 21 from Doylestown to Perkasie Borough Hall so that they may participate in the bridge-opening festivities, scheduled to begin at 11:30 a.m.

After opening remarks by the Commissioners and Borough officials and the ceremonial ribbon-cutting, the dignitaries will cross the bridge in vehicles provided by A&T Chevrolet-Subaru. They will be joined by the Pennridge Marching RAMS, classic cars from the Mopar Heritage Car Club and local businesses and residents who are thrilled that the bridge is open. The procession will travel along Constitution Avenue to Landis Supermarket, where a reception will be held.

The new bridge incorporates decorative lighting and colored stone facing, which bears four plaques commemorating the original 1867 wooden bridge, the 1907 reconstructed bridge (right), the 1970 rehabilitated bridge, and the new structure. Walnut St Bridge - horse and buggy

Other significant aspects of the rebuilt bridge include reconstruction of the approach roadway; new vehicular and pedestrian signals; new retaining walls; ADA-compliant ramps, guiderail and curbing; and sidewalk and drainage improvements.

“The bridge is open just in time for the holiday season, and businesses on both sides of the creek alike are looking forward to welcoming customers who haven’t visited for a while” said Jim Ryder, Perkasie Borough Council President.

“Having a direct route across the creek is as important to Perkasie’s economy today as it was to the farmers and traders who depended on the original bridge for their livelihoods 150 years ago,” Ryder said. “Perkasie thanks the County Commissioners for their assistance and concern in getting this complete bridge replacement approved quickly and completed on schedule.”

H&K Group, Inc., of Douglassville, was the contractor for the project, while the bridge and roadway design was performed by Carroll Engineering Corporation of Warrington. The new bridge is designed to last for at least 100 years.

Local businesses and groups interested in participating in the bridge crossing may contact Perkasie Borough’s Events Coordinator at 215-257-5065.