Bridge work stays on schedule

SHARON, Pa. -- The Oakland Avenue Viaduct replacement project appears to be on schedule for a Nov. 30 completion.
Mark Miller, Mercer County bridge engineer, said the contractor, Carmen Paliotta Contracting of South Park, Pa., hasn't asked for an extension on the project deadline.
The bridge is owned by the county, which is using a combination of state and federal grants to pay for the $3.6 million demolition of the old concrete bridge and its replacement with a steel bridge with a concrete deck.
The demolition drew a lot of attention when the 65-year-old bridge spanning the Shenango Valley Freeway was imploded June 23, collapsing into a pile of debris.
Failure to complete the bridge by Nov. 30 would cost the contractor $650 a day in damages, he said.
Shipments: There had been reports of some delays in getting steel shipped to the site but Miller said the project is apparently on schedule.
The contractor could ask for an extension under certain circumstances, he said.
One of those would be the inability to get the steel needed for the job, though the contractor would have to show that the steel was unavailable anywhere, not only from the original supplier, Miller said.
The contractor has done a good job of keeping traffic moving on the four-lane freeway beneath the bridge, closing it only periodically for some of the steel erection.
The only work that can't be completed this fall is the paving over the concrete bridge approaches, Miller said. That's a warm weather job that will have to be finished in the spring, he said.