OAKMONT (KDKA) — A construction marvel drew spectators to the banks of the Allegheny River in Oakmont on Friday.
The final span of the new Hulton Bridge began being lifted into place.
In the middle of the river, they put the center pieces together on a barge, connected cable jacks to the four corners and started inching them upward.
But lifting thousands of tons is no small engineering effort.
“It’s my understanding this is the first time we’ve done strand jacking anywhere in the state of Pennsylvania,” said PennDOT’s Dan Cessna.
The sheer magnitude of it makes the speed of lifting incredibly slow – 10,000 bolts will hold the spans in place, 2,500 of those would be done when work ended on Friday.
Next comes construction of the bridge deck, and then the eventual closing of the existing bridge to make the connections.
“Those dates are yet to be determined, but it would be late summer to do that into early fall,” said Cessna.
But Friday’s connections bring to an end reports circulating on social media that the project was a mess and the two sides of the bridge don’t line up and would cost millions to fix.
“I’m sure somebody enjoys the joke they made, there is no problem,” said Cessna.