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Skinners Falls Bridge Project

Skinners Falls Bridge Photo.jpg

Project Overview

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) District 4-0, together with the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) Region 9, is preparing a Planning and Environmental Linkages (PEL) Study for the Skinners Falls Bridge.

The Skinners Falls Bridge crosses the Delaware River, connecting the communities of Milanville, PA and Skinners Falls, NY. In recent years, the bridge has undergone a series of traffic closures due to observed structural issues followed by emergency repairs and re-openings.  A customer complaint and subsequent District Bridge Unit inspection on October 16, 2019 identified timber deck and lateral truss bracing deterioration requiring the bridge be closed. PennDOT is conducting a PEL Study to identify the purpose and need for the project. The project purpose and need will drive the process for alternatives consideration, inform the environmental analysis, and ultimately the alternative selection.

PennDOT is using the PEL process as a collaborative and integrated planning approach to develop the transportation purpose and need. PennDOT and NYSDOT are using the project survey to gain input from the community to better understand transportation needs for this location. Data and the comments from the project survey will be considered in development of the purpose and need. Other data being considered include feedback from the Project Advisory Committee, discussions with emergency management professionals, and past bridge usage data.

This PEL Study is the first step in the project development process. Once the project purpose and need is developed through the PEL, the project team will begin to examine alternatives and determine how well the various alternatives can meet the transportation purpose and need. There will be additional opportunities for the public to provide input through this process.

Project Survey – Open Now through June 1, 2021:

An online public meeting was held on March 30, 2021 where 143 people attended and shared questions and comments. Please take a moment to review that presentation or watch the video of the meeting below.

In conjunction with the presentation, a project survey was developed to capture public feedback on transportation needs and data on how the public used the bridge prior to closure.

Due to the outstanding public response to the meeting and to the project survey, the deadline for public commenting through the project survey has been extended to June 1, 2021.

The public is encouraged to respond to the project survey by clicking on the survey link or by scanning the QR code found here.  If you provide contact information on the project survey, PennDOT will contact you about future opportunities to participate.

A Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document has been created to answer some of the questions raised in the comments on the survey and during the meeting. Please take a moment to review it for more information about the PEL Study and the Skinners Falls Bridge.

If you have any questions, would like to request a paper project survey, or require other accommodations please contact the project hotline at (610) 234-5148 or Skinnersfallsbridge@aecom.com.

Section 106 and Consulting Parties:

Anyone with an expressed interest in or a concern with effects to historic properties in Milanville or the Skinners Falls bridge can request to become a Section 106 consulting party via PennDOT's cultural resources public consultation web site PATH for the Skinners Falls Bridge project via this link: https://path.penndot.gov/ProjectDetails.aspx?ProjectID=4487. The PATH website also has information pertaining to the rights and responsibilities of a consulting party.

PEL Public Notice:

This PEL Study is being undertaken in accordance with 23 United States Code (USC) Section 168 as well as with 23 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) 450.212. Under these authorities, analyses conducted during planning may be adopted and incorporated directly or by reference into subsequent environmental documents prepared in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), provided that the studies are adequately documented; interested Federal, State, local, and Tribal agencies are involved; a reasonable opportunity for public review and comment on the PEL Study is provided; and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) is engaged.

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Title VI

Pursuant to Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, PennDOT does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, gender, age, or disability. If you feel that you have been denied the benefits of, or participation in a PennDOT program or activity, you may contact the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, Bureau of Equal Opportunity, DBE/Title VI Division at 717-787-5891 or 800-468-4201.