Bridge 5 Lane and Upper Limeport Bridges

Location: Bucks Couty, PA

Owner: Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources

The Delaware Canal is the only remaining continuously intact canal of the great towpath canal building era of the early and mid-19th century. Completed in 1832, the Delaware Canal was used into the early twentieth century until the railroad systems came into popularity. This canal provided a method to ship goods up and down the east coast easier and much more reliably than the Delaware River.

Coal from up-state Pennsylvania was a major commodity and it came across the Lehigh Canal to Easton where it joined the Delaware Canal. From here, coal could be shipped down the canal to the tidal waters of the Delaware River at Bristol. For ease of construction, the canal parallels the course of the river, in some spots it even appears they share the same bank.

The linear Delaware Canal State Park, created in 1940 and previously known as Roosevelt State Park, provides recreation opportunities along its 60-mile towpath and waterway. This park is on the National Register for Historic Places which places high importance on maintaining the historical look and feel of the location during any construction activities.

The Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) contracted the professional services of CCJM to replace the superstructure for Five Lane Bridge over Delaware Canal in Tinicum Township, Bucks County and the bridge carrying Upper Limeport Road over Delaware Canal in Solebury Township, Bucks County. These two bridges are typical for the unique style of wooden red truss bridge used throughout the length of the canal, most of which were built in the 1930s when the canal ceased operation.

The abutments of these structures were extensively rehabilitated to ensure a solid foundation for the new composite superstructure. The recognizable red canal bridge style was carefully re-created for the replacement structures utilizing context-sensitive design techniques. Temporary canal crossings allowed residential access during construction. These two new structures now provide safe access for local homeowners, municipal services and emergency services.