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Fancourt Bridge Closure Could Have Big Impact On Downtown Traffic

(Photo Credit: KDKA)

(Photo Credit: KDKA)

John Shumway John Shumway
John Shumway joined NewsRadio 1020 KDKA in 2004 as co-host of The KDKA...
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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — It’s small in scope, but major in impact.

We’re closing in on “Road Closed” signs going up in the Golden Triangle.

Built in 1930, the Fancourt Bridge desperately needs to be replaced. And its closure on Thursday is expected to have quite an impact.

There are 7,500 vehicles a day that come down Fort Duquesne Boulevard and travel just past Stanwix Street and cut over the Fancourt Bridge to the ramp to the Fort Pitt Bridge.

“You can tell visually it looks bad; not only that, it is structurally deficient so it needs to come out of there,” PennDOT spokesperson Jim Struzzi said.

The structure will be replaced over the next three months.

“Obviously, it’s going to impact those 7,500 vehicles, but it’s also going to impact traffic downtown cause you’re going to have more traffic funneled into town that you wouldn’t have previously,” Struzzi says.

From Fort Duquesne Boulevard in order to get to the Parkway West, you will have to turn left onto Stanwix Street, go one block and turn right onto Penn Avenue, which then merges into Liberty Avenue and onward to the ramp up to the Fort Pitt Bridge.

You do have an alternative though, you can continue on Stanwix past Penn and Liberty – all the way to Fort Pitt Boulevard – where you can use the on-ramp there to the Fort Pitt Bridge.

But that’s just the afternoon rush hour side of the story. The 10th Street Bypass is also taking a hit.

“Access to it from the ramps you see behind us need to be closed,” said Struzzi.

And that means, whether you’re coming off the Fort Duquesne Bridge or the Fort Pitt Bridge heading for the bypass, you will be forced off onto Fort Duquesne Boulevard.

“Not a major inconvenience, but it is going to put a lot more traffic on Fort Duquesne Boulevard, particularly during the morning rush hour,” Struzzi added.

The work was supposed to start at 7 a.m. Thursday, but PennDOT has decided to delay the closing until after Thursday night’s rush hour.

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