MEHOOPANY – People living near the Sugar Hollow Road Bridge told PennDOT loud and clear that the project’s detour would be dangerous during the winter time and they were not happy about it. The bridge still closed this week, but there’s some relief for residents in sight.
Work is in full swing on the Sugar Hollow Road Bridge in Wyoming County. The bridge that spans the Mehoopany Creek is now closed to traffic while crews begin stream excavation and build a retaining wall.
This closure is now causing big problems for Lauren Nothoff of Mehoopany.
"It`s a pain in the butt, going to school that way this morning I was 15 minutes late,” said Nohoff.
The alternate route takes drivers on about a seven-mile detour, one that many drivers are calling treacherous.
"It`s real steep and I thought I was concerned with coming down this way but that`s straight down,” said Nothoff.
Marion Anderson has lived along Sugar Hollow Road for 40 years. She says the detour is one she is afraid to drive.
"At first I thought, well, maybe I ought to sell my house and move out,” said Anderson.
Although this bridge is now closed to traffic it won`t be demolished until next spring and that`s something many people living in this area of Mehoopany are thankful for, for many reasons.
PennDOT modified the project just this month to reopen the bridge during the winter after feedback from schools, residents and businesses in the Mehoopany Area.
William Kovaleski can see the Mehoopany Bridge Project from his backyard ans says he’s pleased with the decision to open the bridge for the winter.
"That is the best thing they could have done is work around the existing bridge so it could be reopened and if there should be some emergency up in this area, the roadway is actually still open they could get here,” said Kovaleski.
For others they’re just glad the project to replace this rusted bridge is finally in full swing.
"Finally, we`ve been hearing about it for the seven years since we moved in and they finally started it,” said William Simon of Mehoopany.
The $3.3 million dollar bridge project is scheduled to be wrapped up by next summer.