(Updated: October 31, 2014) – Preliminary work will soon start on the $19 million MD 272 (Mauldin Avenue) Bridge replacement project in Cecil County.  The project is located in the Town of North East and construction crews will be on site Monday, November 10.  Designed to address system preservation and pedestrian safety, the Maryland State Highway Administration (SHA) will build the new two-lane bridge east of the existing bridge on a new alignment.

“Addressing our State’s aging infrastructure is a top priority, especially in Main Street communities that rely on bridges and State roadways to connect to residences and economic centers,” stated SHA Administrator Melinda B. Peters.  “Investing and meeting community needs helps to sustain economic development, enhance safety and improve Maryland’s major gateways.”

The existing MD 272 bridge is a three-span steel beam structure. Built in 1954, the bridge has 3-foot wide sidewalks and does not have shoulders.  The new single-span straight girder bridge will provide two travel lanes, 5-foot wide shoulders, ADA compliant sidewalks and pedestrian ramps at intersections.

“A new bridge in North East will help ensure public safety and convenience crossing the bridge.  It will be a major improvement serving motorists, plus wider shoulders to accommodate bicyclists and new sidewalks for pedestrians,  I want to thank the State Highway Administration and the Town of North East for their work on this project,” said Del. David D. Rudolph of Cecil County.

The bridge project also includes two retaining walls and a partial realignment of one-quarter mile along Mauldin Avenue.  Crews will construct new 5-foot wide concrete sidewalks on both sides of MD 272 and ADA compliant pedestrian ramps that will extend along MD 272 from the intersection with Main and Russell streets to the entrance of the North East Station Shopping Center. The project also includes installing new and relocated roadway signs, special aesthetic lighting and storm drain improvements. Construction is expected to be completed late 2016.

During construction of the MD 272 (Maudlin Avenue) bridge replacement, drivers should prepare for brief delays.  The project is designed to maintain two lanes of traffic.  At times, SHA will use a flagging operation to guide both directions of traffic through the work zone.  Work may require one lane of the bridge to be closed as needed between 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., Mondays through Fridays, to move construction materials and equipment. SHA’s contractor may also need to implement single-lane closures occasionally on Saturdays in case inclement weather occurs. Any single-lane closures on Saturdays will be coordinated in advance with the Town of North East.

Initial work includes setting erosion and storm water controls and clearing operations.  Drivers can then expect to see crews constructing the new bridge while maintaining traffic on the existing bridge.  After a series of traffic shifts to the newly-completed portions of the new bridge, SHA crews will demolish the existing bridge and complete final items on the new structure.

Those who are interested in learning more about the project may attend the Town of North East’s monthly Mayor and Commissioners meeting on Wednesday, November 12 at 7 p.m.  SHA representatives will provide an overview of the project and be available to answer questions.

SHA awarded the contract to Mumford and Miller Concrete, Inc., of Middletown, Delaware.

While SHA and its transportation partners work hard to maintain safe traffic mobility in work zones, each driver needs to actively modify his or her driving style to help prevent crashes. Stay alert and look for reduced speed limits, narrow driving lanes and highway workers.  Slow down and don’t follow too closely. Safer Driving.  Safer Work Zones. For Everyone!
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