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February 15, 2017

1 in 5 Pennsylvania bridges are 'structurally deficient,' report says

Once again, Pennsylvania is among the nation's leaders in structurally deficient bridges, according to an annual report.

The American Road & Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA) released its analysis of federal data Wednesday. Pennsylvania actually improved from the 2016 report, with 4,506 bridges deemed "structurally deficient" this year, as opposed to 4,783 last year.

That's good for second behind Iowa, which again led the annual report with 4,968, also an improvement for the state from last year.

Twenty percent of Pennsylvania's bridges hold the structurally deficient classification, which means that at least one key element in the bridge — like the deck, superstructure or substructure — is considered to be in "poor" or worse condition.

The top 15 most traveled structurally deficient bridges in the state were all separate portions of I-95 in Philadelphia, all of which were built before 1972. The part of I-95 that covers Olde Richmond and Fishtown was the most traveled in the state, with 208,978 daily crossings.

Pennsylvania has identified about 12,000 bridges that need repairs, which will cost an estimated $12 million, according to the report.