Mercer County, New Jersey and Bucks County, Pennsylvania
The new $396 million Scudder Falls Bridge replaced an outdated, congestion-pone crossing between Pennsylvania and New Jersey with a new modern structure featuring the latest design standards.
The original four-lane bridge over the Delaware River was functionally obsolete, experienced high peak-period and emergency-incident traffic congestion and was not keeping pace with projected future traffic demands. Numerous commuter safety and operational upgrades also needed to be addressed at the bridge and adjoining highway segments and interchanges.
Michael Baker led the preliminary and final design services under an accelerated 16-month design schedule. The project involved replacing the existing bridge with two twin-span 1,850-foot structures carrying six lanes of through traffic and three auxiliary lanes to handle traffic merging onto and off the bridge. The project also included seven ramp and approach bridges and extensive use of retaining walls.
The work involved complete reconstruction of the deficient Route 29/175 interchange on the New Jersey side that included creating two roundabouts, reconfiguring the Taylorsville Road interchange in Pennsylvania and widening approximately 2 miles of I-95 on both approaches of the bridge – all to improve safety and efficiency for motorists.
Keeping other modes of transportation in mind, Michael Baker designed a bicycle/pedestrian walkway connecting the historic canal tow paths on both sides of the river. The design of the I-95 new bridges and approach roadway also included inside shoulders to allow for future mass transit service. Michael Baker also provided the design of noise-abatement walls and a new all electronic tolling (AET) collection system and related infrastructure for highway-speed toll collection. Additionally, Michael Baker was responsible for the design of a four-story support building for the intelligent transportation system (ITS) equipment, AET equipment and bridge security staff.
The project successfully met the Delaware River Joint Toll Bridge Commission’s goals to alleviate traffic congestion and upgrade safety and operational conditions.
"Michael Baker International designed the original Scudder Falls Bridge, which opened in 1959. We have come full circle with the design of the new replacement span, and our team is proud of our ability to provide our client with infrastructure facilities that have a 100-year service life and greatly improve traffic congestion, operations, and safety throughout this corridor. The new Scudder Falls Bridge is aesthetically pleasing and in harmony with the historic nature of this area."
- Project Manager
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