The members of Hellertown Borough Council voted unanimously to demand a rebuild of a bridge that is in the process of being replaced, after several members expressed dissatisfaction with the quality of the work that has been performed so far Monday night.
Councilman Tom Rieger told a representative that the recently-poured Harris Street bridge clearly exhibits a "bowl effect."
The small bridge is located on an alley behind the 600 block of Main Street, where it spans the Silver Creek.
Council president Phil Weber, who works in the construction industry, said he also viewed the new structure and is unsure what happened, although he said he is sure there is a problem with it.
"My guess is it happened after the initial set," he said.
Addressing borough engineer Bryan Smith, of Barry Isett and Associates, he said "there’s a reason precast works better and this is one of them,
because it’s all controlled in an inside environment."
Weber also recommended against trying to remedy the problem with the use of a "bonding agent," which he said could result in "a one-inch dip in the middle of the bridge" two years from now.
"We’re paying for a new bridge. We have a damaged bridge," Weber said. "I think our stance has to be to jackhammer it out and do it
correctly—no ifs, ands or buts."
Council vice president John Bate was absent from the meeting.
Photo: The Harris Street Bridge under construction (photo by Yahshavah Breedlove)