Repairs are on the way for the Fort Duquesne, West End and McKees Rocks bridges in Allegheny County, thanks to $132 million in new investments the Shapiro-Davis administration announced Thursday, Jan. 18, by Lt. Gov. Austin Davis and Pennsylvania Secretary of Transportation (PennDOT) Mike Carroll at a news conference in Pittsburgh.
“Pittsburgh’s bridges carry thousands of Pennsylvanians and millions of dollars’ worth of goods every single day – they’re critical to western Pennsylvania and our economic success. My administration has a GSD attitude – we’re getting stuff done for the people of Pennsylvania – and with the help of state funding, we were able to repair 74 bridges and 7,011 miles of roads across the commonwealth last year,” said Gov. Josh Shapiro. “My administration is continuing to build on that progress by investing $132 million in additional federal and state funding to repair vital bridges across Allegheny County. Pennsylvania’s progress has often been tied to our ability to complete major projects that spur economic growth and create real opportunity – and with these new investments, my administration will continue to safely, quickly and skillfully strengthen Allegheny County’s infrastructure.”
“Pittsburgh is the City of Bridges – they knit together our neighborhoods, as local residents go to and from school, work, shopping and civic events,” said Davis. “Gov. Shapiro and I understand how important bridges are for our communities and our region’s economic vitality, and that’s why our administration is investing $132 million in additional funding to repair and restore these three iconic spans. In addition, more infrastructure spending equals more jobs – good-paying, family-sustaining jobs. We’re proud to stand with our union brothers and sisters, who are working hard to rebuild Pennsylvania.”
The increased federal funds from the infrastructure law mean PennDOT has more “spike” funding that can be allocated at the secretary’s discretion, as part of the state’s 12-year transportation program.
Spike funding has traditionally gone toward high-cost projects, like the bridge upgrades announced Thursday. The McKees Rocks Bridge will receive $25 million and the Fort Duquesne Bridge will receive $60 million in spike funding from the draft 12-year program update for 2025. The West End Bridge had received spike funding through the current 12-year program, and it will receive an additional $47 million from the 2025 update. Because these bridges provide critical links to the city of Pittsburgh and carry thousands of vehicles every day, PennDOT will ensure that traffic will remain flowing during construction.
“There are significant needs across our transportation network, and certainly in southwest Pennsylvania,” said Carroll. “Thanks to the leadership at the federal level that got us the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, more federal funds are available for our program, and thanks to the smart planning by the Shapiro administration and the Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission, we’re making the most of our federal and state dollars, and investing funds in meaningful projects that will benefit Pennsylvania communities.”
In addition to historic investments in passenger rail, electric vehicle charging stations and airports, the federal Bipartisan Infrastructure Law also provides significant funding increases to state transportation departments for road and bridge improvements.
“The infrastructure law is making Pittsburgh’s many bridges safer for the thousands of residents, commuters and travelers who rely on them every day,” said U.S. Sen. Bob Casey (D-PA). “The McKees Rocks, West End and Fort Duquesne bridges are vital to keeping the city of Pittsburgh moving. When we improve the condition of our bridges, we strengthen the region’s economy and make the City of Bridges easier to navigate.”
“The hardworking families of Allegheny County rely on these bridges to connect them to work, education, resources and friends. I am delighted that these long-needed repairs are underway, ensuring that members of our community can travel around our beautiful city safely and easily,” said state Sen. Jay Costa (D-43). “I’m grateful to the Shapiro administration and all the folks who have delivered this crucial funding. I am especially grateful for the union workers who will be conducting these repairs, and I look forward to celebrating the fruits of their labor.”
“Our bridges are essential to sustaining both our economic and social well-being in Allegheny County. This funding is key to enabling our region’s infrastructure for both current and future generations,” said state Rep. Aerion Abney (D-19). “It exemplifies the effective actions taken by this administration to get things done – and we are grateful for their commitment to the prosperity of our region.”
In addition to the Allegheny County bridge projects, the Wildwood intersection of state Route 8 will receive $4.5 million in new spike funding. Projects in Lancaster and Adams counties are also in line for new spike funding commitments.
The Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission, the region’s transportation planning organization, will receive nearly $400 million total in new spike funding, an increase of more than $90 million over the previous 12-year program.
“On behalf of the thousands of people who cross some of the most heavily travelled bridges in our region, thank you Gov. Shapiro, Lt. Gov. Davis and Secretary Carroll for this major investment,” said Rich Fitzgerald, executive director, Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission. “Investing in our critical infrastructure means drivers, pedestrians and bicyclists in our region will have access to safer and more efficient modes of transportation.”
“Our bridges are our gateway, they’re our identity as a region and organized labor takes this deep in its soul,” said Darrin Kelly, president of the Allegheny-Fayette Central Labor Council. “We must never forget that when we invest in infrastructure, we’re investing in people.”
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