WILLIAMSPORT — After two years of construction, a new bridge in Lycoming County opened to traffic Wednesday.
Work on the bridge between Williamsport and DuBoistown is in the final stages, however there could be some confusion thanks to a detour for drivers headed to the nearby state park.
It took a couple of years but the new DuBoistown Bridge is finally ready for cars and trucks to cross the Susquehanna River.
It replaces the old bridge between Williamsport and DuBoistown.
Drivers were able to pull into the adjacent Susquehanna State Park, happy to see the bridge nearing completion.
“It was really neat, we’ve been watching it being built for quite a while. We’ve been waiting and counting down until it’s opened,” said Chris Kita of DuBoistown.
It is open but in order to be completed, work has to be done on the Williamsport side of the river. That means anyone heading to the state park or to the Hiawatha Paddlewheel Riverboat needs to take a detour.
PennDOT has marked the route with bright orange signs, but Hiawatha officials said the detour can be a bit confusing.
“We are sending out directions to all our private parties and special events like concert cruises and dinner cruises that are coming up in the next month & a half,” said cruise director Katie Tinney.
If you’re on the Williamsport side of the river and want to get to Susquehanna State Park where the Hiawatha is located, you cannot get there from the city. You have to take a lengthy detour, across the river on the Maynard Street bridge, then come back across the river on the new DuBoistown Bridge.
The change in traffic patterns also means a change in location for the annual animal walk at the state park, a fundraiser for the Lycoming County SPCA.
The walk will now start and end at the shelter on reach road in Williamsport.
“I did go down there (to PennDOT), I pouted and begged, and asked if they could wait until Monday. They’re behind schedule and didn’t even want to hear my pleas,” said Executive Director Vicki Stryker.
This phase of construction was delayed due to the problems with utilities, according to PennDOT and should last until November.