Frederick Co. bridge reopens earlier than expected after emergency repairs

WASHINGTON — A bridge that provides a commuting option to and from Frederick but was forced to close last month has reopened sooner than expected.

This photo from the Maryland State Highway Administration shows the Route 355 bridge over the Monocacy River. The bridge reopened Thursday afternoon after emergency repairs were completed weeks sooner than expected. (Courtesy Maryland State Highway Administration)

The Route 355 Bridge over the Monocacy River in Urbana reopened to traffic Thursday afternoon. It closed to traffic after it damaged on Dec. 7 when a truck that was being towed hit several steel beams.

“The weight load on that bridge shifted, so we had to immediately close it to traffic and begin an immediate repair,” said Charlie Gischlar with the Maryland State Highway Administration.

Crews had to stabilize the bridge in order to safely fix it, and initially the repair work was estimated to take 60 days.

“What really saved us time was that material that we used for the temporary stabilization was readily available and repurposed, because it was right there at one of our SHA yards leftover from a previous project,” Gischlar said.

The bridge underwent a safety test before it reopened to traffic.

An average of 12,100 vehicles use the bridge daily.

Michelle Basch

Michelle Basch is a reporter and anchor at WTOP.

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