Q&A about the Bridge/Dam

Oct 6, 2011 by

Be informed!  The 3rd Street Bridge/Dam Public Hearing is Thursday, 10/13.  If you care about the design of the bridge/dam and its impact on Glen Providence Park, this is your opportunity to voice your opinion and ask questions!

Take 15 minutes and educate yourself!

Our recommendation:

1- Read our Guide to the Bridge/Dam documents that are posted on the Borough website.

2- Read our 3rd Street Bridge/Dam updates from the Borough’s 3rd Street Bridge/Dam Committee meeting on August 23.

3- Read this condensed 4 page version of the 18 pages of Q&A from the engineers, from our July 31 and August 9 lists of questions and the August 3 Special Meeting.



This is a selection of the project engineers’ written answers to questions we submitted to them about the 3rd Street Bridge/Dam.  The original location of the answers is notated by the date of the question and the page where the answer is found, for example: (7/31 p. 2).  Review these answers and see what follow-up questions they raise for you!

Dam footprint:

Q: What can be done to reduce the physical footprint of this dam?

A: The parking lane and/or shoulder can be eliminated.  (7/31 p. 2)



Q: Can there be stone facing in the final design, on both sides of the dam?

A: Stone masonry for proposed structures could only be a facing over reinforced concrete, is much more expensive, and would likely not be approved by PennDOT. Formliners are a relatively inexpensive alternative that PennDOT will likely agree to fund. Formliners can be used to give concrete the appearance of stone. The final surface can be stained to mimic color variations of natural stone. The stone resulting from the demolition of site structures can be retained by the Park or the Borough for use on future projects. (7/31 p. 5)

Q: Can we request that the replacement fence for the swim club be in keeping with the design? Is barbed wire necessary?

A: Alternative fencing at the north side of 3rd Street will be discussed with the Swim Club. PennDOT will pay for cyclone fencing or fencing of similar durability and cost. PennDOT will not fund ornamental fencing; the Borough or other parties would need to pay for ornamental fencing. (7/31 p. 6)

Q: What kind of plantings can be done on a downstream dam wall, in addition to grasses?

A: There can be no trees or woody shrubs on the earth dam. Slopes must be covered with grass. See PADEP Fact Sheet regarding vegetation on dams. (7/31 p. 6)

Q: What type of fence is proposed directly above the outlet?

A: Cyclone fencing has been proposed around the outlet at the downstream slope of the dam; however, the Borough may allow and pay for ornamental fencing in this location. (7/31 p. 6)



Q: Can we ban vehicular traffic and create a “greenway” designed exclusively for foot and bike traffic? This would sustain current low levels of air and noise pollution at Glen Providence Park.

A: Although PennDOT Guidelines do not preclude removal of the vehicular bridge and replacement with a pedestrian greenway, the decision to reconstruct the dam and roadway was made in 1998 in conjunction with securing funding for the project. In addition, the recent legal agreement among Media Borough, Delaware County, and Broomalls Swim Club requires reconstruction of the roadway on top of the dam. (7/31 p. 2)  Note: we believe the wording of the legal agreement allows for a pedestrian/bicycle greenway with emergency vehicle access.

Q: Could the road be made one-way into Borough, both reducing the width of the dam, and minimizing traffic and noise?

A: Although PennDOT Guidelines would allow a one-way roadway, the decision to reconstruct the dam and roadway as a two-lane thoroughfare was made in 1998 in conjunction with securing funding for the project. (7/31 p. 3)

Q: Can we eliminate the parking lane, and replace it with a bike lane and sidewalk?

A: Yes, the parking lane can be eliminated. A bike lane and/or sidewalk will be funded only if they connect to a bike lane and sidewalk on each side of the bridge and dam. (7/31 p. 3)

Q: Could we connect a bridge sidewalk on the Upper Providence side of the bridge with a trail entering Glen Providence Park? That trail could then lead to the Kirk Lane park entrance, and connect with the planned greenway in Upper Providence.

A: Yes; however, the trail entering Glen Providence Park must be a hard paved surface and ADA- compliant relative to widths, slopes, and landings. (7/31 p. 3)



See our 3rd Street Bridge/Dam updates from the Borough’s 3rd Street Bridge/Dam Committee meeting on August 23.


Stream Water Quality:

Q: What will keep the fertilizer (listed in the Safety Review Plans) from destroying the High Water Quality designation of Broomall’s Run and Ridley Creek?

A: Mulch will be applied to topsoiled and fertilized areas to reduce erosion potential. Rapid growth of grass is critical in avoiding erosion of topsoil and downstream sediment deposition, which would be detrimental to the stream.            (7/31 p. 4)


Historic Resource:

A historic resources survey was conducted in the early 2000s… Glen Providence Park was found to be eligible for the National Register of Historic Places. A Determination of Effect (DOE) Report was performed by Cultural Heritage Research Services, Inc. (CHRS) in October 2003. The report found that the proposed work on the dam will have “No Adverse Effect” to the Glen Providence Park, as defined in 36 CFR §800.16(i). (7/31 p. 4)

A Section 2002 (Section 4f) Evaluation, required when a transportation facility may impact public land, was completed in March 2004. The Evaluation concluded that “there is no feasible and prudent alternative that avoids Section 2002 Resources,” and the proposed alternative “meets the project needs and is considered prudent. The above reports issued by CHRS are located on the Borough’s web site. (7/31 p. 5)



Q: At what water level will the lake be maintained during construction? How will you minimize and monitor the impact to the lake’s wildlife and to the park’s wetlands?

A: The required lake level during construction has not yet been determined. It is possible that for a short duration during construction of the drop inlet spillway, the lake will need to be completely drained. Construction fence will be required at the perimeter of the area of disturbance to limit impacts to the permitted areas. Wetlands within the area of disturbance will be mitigated elsewhere in the watershed. (8/9 p. 3)

Q: Will the park be accessible from this entrance during construction?

A: Access during construction will not be permitted due to safety concerns. (8/9 p. 3)

Q: What will be the access route for construction vehicles to the base of the dam?

A: A temporary access road is proposed in the vicinity of the existing path at the east side of the dam. The walking path will be restored at the conclusion of the project. (8/9 p. 3)

Q: Where will the construction vehicles be parked during the construction phase?

A: Construction staging areas will be provided on the closed portion of 3rd Street. (8/9 p. 3)



Q: We request a one-to-one replacement of every tree (over 10’ tall) that is taken down in the project. We request native trees of at least 8′ be planted. We would prefer they be planted along the new entrance and walkway to the park – to restore the wooded feel to the entrance.

A: The project team will discuss with the Borough and Delaware County (park owner). (8/9 p. 4)

Q: Additionally, a tradeoff for wetlands impacted at the park for wetlands elsewhere is not acceptable.

A: Wetland mitigation locations have not been determined. A possible mitigation site is the pond area within Glen Providence Park. However, it should be noted that construction vehicles and associated access roads to the pond will affect additional areas of the park. (8/9 p. 4) Note: the main sledding hill is already used for maintenance vehicle access.


Review process:

Q: What exactly are PennDOT’s and the DEP’s standards or guidelines for public input in projects such as this?

A: Once a permit is submitted to PADEP for review, it is advertized in the PA Bulletin to open a 30-day comment period. The advertisement contains information relative to the submission of comments or protests. (8/9 p. 1)

The public meeting is completed before the Environmental Documentation is submitted and approved. The ED has not been submitted yet for this project. Projects submitted for PADEP permit are advertized in the PA Bulletin for a 30-day comment period. If significant comments are received, a meeting may be scheduled by PADEP. (8/9 p. 1)

Our additional questions about the review process: when in the design process will the Environmental Documentation be submitted?  And, can we be informed when the Environmental Documentation is submitted to the PADEP?



Q: Why weren’t [the 2011 Color Plans & Simulations] provided to the public for input?

A: The plans were presented at the public meeting for comment.  (7/31 p. 6)  Clarification: These questions were submitted on July 31, before the August 3 public meeting.  We did not receive these answers until September.


So… there are more answers in the three sets of Q&A- consider reading through all three lists of answers!  But note that if you read them chronologically, you may find yourself confused.  The 7/31 questions were the first submitted, but the last answered.  They have updated information that is sometimes different than earlier answers.

Still have questions?  Good!  Write them down and bring them to the public hearing on October 13!


We will continue to update this summary with information and clarification.


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