(June 9, 2011) – It’s served motorists who travel MD 545 (Blue Ball Road) in Cecil County faithfully since 1932.  However, the historic steel pony truss bridge across Little Elk Creek will be replaced with a new structure for the 4,700 motorists who use this bridge each day.

Beginning on June 18, the Maryland State Highway Administration (SHA) will close MD 545 to through traffic at Little Elk Creek (adjacent to the I-95 overpass).  Traffic will be detoured using MD 279 (Elkton-Newark Road), MD 213 (Singerly Road) and MD 273 (Telegraph Road).  Access to properties on both sides of the creek will be maintained during construction yet will be  unable to drive on the bridge. 

To ensure an expedited replacement process, SHA is building a new bridge that includes “precast beams” which are fabricated offsite and delivered to the work area ready to install.  SHA expects to open the new bridge to traffic by September, with the $1.5 million project complete late fall.

“Drivers should be aware that this detour will add several miles when traveling from one side of the bridge to the other,” stated SHA District 2 Engineer Terry Wright.  “It will not be possible to cross Little Elk Creek on MD 545 during construction, and there will not be room at the work site for large trucks to turn around. Truck drivers are strongly advised to plan ahead this summer.”

Once the bridge is reopened to traffic, motorists should expect occasional single lane closures and a flagging operation on the bridge while any remaining work is completed.  SHA estimates full completion of the project - including repaving of the bridge approaches - by late October.

SHA awarded the contract to Concrete General of Gaithersburg.  SHA reminds motorists to plan ahead and check travel conditions including live traffic cameras and lane closure updates at  Remember that work zones are not only large construction projects possibly taking years to complete, but smaller, mobile operations such as mowing, pothole repair and litter pick ups.  Choose to make work zone safety your business at  To learn more about other projects, log onto and check out e-Road Ready 2011.

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