The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) announced a week ago through its Allentown office that work would begin today, to repair two structurally deficient bridges on State Road/Sugar Hollow Road in Chestnuthill Township, Monroe County. The bridges traverse Sugar Hollow Creek and one of its tributaries.

That work will be delayed by at least a day or two due to unforeseen circumstances says Robert P. Mudrick, Monroe County Maintenance Manager, Department of Transportation.

"Work will begin on the first bridge, over a tributary of Sugar Hollow Creek, which is approximately 2.4 miles east of PA 115, after the bridge on Route 715, near White Church Road, is completed later this week.

"The second bridge, over Sugar Hollow Creek, is just east of this one and work will begin on it immediately after work finishes on the first bridge."

PennDOT maintenance workers will repair footers and replace the beams and decks on the two steel I-beam bridges, repairs that should keep the bridges in good stead for decades to come, according to Mudrick.

Beginning this week, State Road/Sugar Hollow Road will be closed and detoured between Sugar Hollow Road and Sunnybrook Road, the former Lake Road. The posted detour will route traffic on PA 115, Effort Neola Road and PA 715. Motorists are advised to allow for extra time and use caution when traveling through the area.

The work on these bridges is expected to last eight to 10 weeks. All schedules are weather dependent, one of the factors changing the posted start date of Aug. 15.

Both bridges were constructed in 1932 and are posted with 15-ton weight restrictions. When the work is complete the weight restrictions will be lifted and the bridges will no longer be deemed structurally deficient, according to Mudrick.

According to PennDOT engineering the bridge over a tributary to Sugar Hollow Creek is 13 feet long and 25.9 feet wide. The bridge over Sugar Hollow Creek is 19 feet long and 26 feet wide. State Road/Sugar Hollow Road has an average daily traffic volume of 4,946 vehicles.