8:30 p.m. UPDATE: The bridge is reopen.
8 p.m. UPDATE: Crews are still working to seal the bridge deck. Cold temperatures are delaying the drying process. Anticipated opening is now 8:30 p.m.
The Ambridge-Aliquippa Bridge will reopen Thursday afternoon after being closed since early March because of structural repairs.
PennDOT spokesman James Struzzi said the bridge will remain closed to pedestrians through winter. The sidewalk has been temporarily removed for improvements. After the bridge is reopened to traffic, short-term lane closures will continue as needed through winter.
Struzzi said the 10-foot span bridge will remain open until March 2013 when it will close again until October 2013 to complete repairs.
The bridge closed for extensive rehabilitation as part of a two-year $16.6-million project.Crews are performing steel repairs under the bridge deck and substructure work.
The Ambridge-Aliquippa Bridge closed to traffic March 3, resulting in longer commutes and increased traffic on the Sewickley Bridge and the Route 65 corridor. The structure crosses the Ohio River between Route 65 and Route 51 in Aliquippa and Ambridge. The nearby Sewickley Bridge was used as the official detour during the closing.
Commuters are no doubt overjoyed. Anticipating the re-opening, Patch reader Jason Camerlin commented that use of the bridge will mean an extra half-hour of sleep before work.
"I work in Cranberry so it will cut my commute time almost in half...," he wrote.
PennDOT estimates the bridge handles about 12,588 vehicles on an average day.
Tell us: Are you excited to have the bridge open? How did the closing affect your commute?