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Broad Run Creek

Chester County, Pennsylvania

Golf Course


Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT)


Urban Engineers, Inc.


McMinn’s Asphalt


September 15, 2005

Technical Description:

  • Span: 48 ft
  • Rise: 11 ft
  • Length: 32 ft

In summer 2003, heavy rains and flooding caused a bridge carrying Strasburg Road over Broad Run creek to collapse. Due to traffic volumes and recent residential development in this once-rural community, along with a lengthy detour on adjacent, busy roads, time was essential for the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) in repairing or replacing the bridge.

However, restoration of the bridge proved to be a complicated task. A number of factors played major roles in the design and completion of the project. Broad Run, an important tributary of Brandywine Creek, was classified as an environmentally protected Exceptional Value watershed. The stream also supports a population of brown trout, whose spawning needs and sensitivity to sediment had to be considered. Additionally, the bridge is adjacent to a prime bog turtle habitat.

Because the project was deemed an emergency replacement, time and cost efficiency were also high priorities. A precast CON/SPAN concrete arch was selected to allow construction to proceed quickly. The clear span structure could alleviate environmental concerns over impact on the stream and also allowed for replication of the original bridge’s aesthetic quality.

Consulting engineer Urban Engineers began design for the project on a fast track. During construction, a cold snap initially prevented final paving, but some unexpected warm weather allowed the bridge roadway to be paved and opened by January 2006. The ASHE Delaware Valley Section awarded the project as Project of the Year for 2006.

Technical Description:

  • Span: 48 ft
  • Rise: 11 ft
  • Length: 32 ft

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