If you’ve driven on the Walt Whitman Bridge, the Schuylkill Expressway around Gladwyne, I-95 near the SugarHouse Casino, or on the Pennsylvania Turnpike between Horsham and Fort Washington, you’ve crossed a certifiably decrepit bridge.
And a report released Thursday by a Washington-based lobbying group highlighted a dubious and familiar note about deteriorating bridges in Pennsylvania: No state in the nation has more.
According to the analysis by the American Road and Transportation Builders Association, more than 5,200 of the commonwealth’s 22,600 bridges – 23 percent – are rated structurally deficient under federal guidelines, a classification earned when an inspector rates at least one aspect of the bridge poor or unsafe.
Structurally deficient bridges are not imminently dangerous, the group emphasized, but they need repairs. More than 63,000 bridges fall into that category nationwide.
Working to repair Glouco’s Paradise Road for its new role
Pennsylvania’s raw numbers and percentages of structurally deficient bridges are the highest in the country, the association said.
That’s the section of I-95 near my house. But I avoid the road whenever possible because the side streets are faster.