Springton Reservoir, Rt. 252 Project Presented

The Aqua/PennDOT project, which is currently in its preliminary design phase, is expected to be completed by September 2017.

A preliminary design plan to replace the Springton Dam and Bridge along Route 252 in Marple and Upper Providence townships was presented recently by Aqua Pennsylvania and the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation. 

The goal of the joint project is to fix the structurally deficient bridge across the Springton Reservoir and increase the spillway of the dam to comply with Department of Environmental Protection's 100-year flood plan, Rick Kemper, project manager from Gannett Fleming, said.

Route 252 will not close during the project (with the exception of a few short term overnight closures) and one lane of traffic, each way, will be maintained throughout the project, Kemper said.

The project, which is federally and state funded, is currently in its preliminary design phase. Construction is expected to begin in September 2015 and is expected to be completed by September 2017. 

The project design, presented to both Marple and Upper Providence townships to inform the community and gain feedback, shows that the roadway would remain two lanes (one lane in each direction) however the shoulders would be widened, Kemper said at Upper Providence's meeting on Thursday.

The project does not increase the two-lane roadway to four lanes even though further down Rt. 252 construction has begun on the widening of Rt. 252 to four lanes near the Media Bypass, he said, as the purpose of the project is to fix the structurally deficient bridge.

The bridge was built in 1929 and sits directly on top of the Springton Reservoir (historically known as the Geist Reservoir) spillway walls, Kemper said.

The barrier wall will likely be changed, as the current stone wall is not within federal highway safety compliance, but an architectural treatment is being considered and the public's feedback will be considered, he said.

"We want input and direction as to what your preferences are," Kemper said. 

At the Marple Township meeting, PennDot representatives said the Gradyville Road bridge would be fixed and the road would be reopen, prior to the start of this project, according to Marple Township Manager Anthony Hamaday.

Construction Timeline

  • Stage One: Construction would maintain one lane of traffic in each direction, upgrade the shoulders of the roadway and construct a retaining wall and temporary roadway and bridge. 
  • Stage Two: Shift the northbound traffic to the newly constructed temporary road and the southbound traffic would shift to the northbound lane, still maintaining one lane of traffic each way. This would allow for the west side of the bridge to be replaced. 
  • Stage Three: Shift both northbound and southbound traffic to the new portion of the bridge and allow for the east side of the bridge to be replaced. 


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