The American Road & Transportation Builders Association has released a new video detailing the emergency rebuild of I-95 in northeast Philadelphia after a fiery tractor trailer crash.
“While officials warned that closure of America’s busiest East Coast highway could last months – disrupting commerce and majorly impacting summer travel for millions – crews were able to repair and reopen the temporary fix to six lanes of interstate in just 12 days,” ARTBA says. “This feat was made possible by a combination of good old fashioned hard work and the ability to innovate – two hallmarks of the transportation construction industry at large.”
The crash occurred early morning June 11 when a tractor trailer carrying gasoline hit an underpass wall and exploded at an underpass. The driver died.
The collapsed section of I-95 reopened June 23 in a rapid 24/7 rebuild project.
Six temporary lanes – three in each direction – opened over the collapsed section. The new lanes will be in use while the beginnings of a permanent bridge are built to each side. Once those lanes are completed, the temporary lanes will be demolished and the center part of the bridges will be built. The plan calls for keeping traffic moving throughout the construction. It is estimated 160,000 vehicles traveled the section each day before the collapse.
The permanent rebuild is estimated to cost about $30 million and be completed by June of 2024. It is expected that traffic will switch to newly constructed outer lanes this winter. Then a new bridge will be built in the center.