Guide to bridge/dam documents

There are over 22 documents (with at least 345 pages!) about the 3rd Street Bridge/Dam on the Media Borough website.  Don’t know where to begin?  Here is our guide to the information contained in them, with individual links to each document.

Please review our summary, then review in detail those documents that interest you- and please email us at if there is something you think we have missed!  For the most recent updates, scroll down to “Where We Are” at the end.


Dam & Roadway Designs

The Design Alternatives Report – 1998 (23 pages) is a 9-25-1998 letter from Schnabel Engineering to Media Borough, outlining spillway design options. This technical report can be difficult to follow. It seems that the option of a concrete dam was discounted, as a concrete spillway would assume that the roadway and utilities would be abandoned.  The other design options are difficult to discern.  The report includes drawings of 3 alternative designs.

Schnabel’s Color Plans and Simulations show the side view of the current dam design, with 3 overhead views showing the three different roadway designs- they are the same documents as Design Alternative #1 (just 2 lanes with shoulders), Design Alternative #2 (allows for possible future sidewalk), and Design Alternative #3 (includes parking lane and sidewalk).

The Rehabilitation of Third Street Bridge/Dam (Power Point Presentation) (22 pages) is from the August 3 Special Meeting.  It includes photographs of the current dam, the utilities that run through the dam and the current design renderings. Photographs of Martins Dam are representative of how this dam would look.  The Third Street Bridge Renderings 1-4 and Third Street Bridge Fly Over provide further visuals of the design.


Environmental Impact:

The 5-10-2011 Schnabel Engineering Letter includes a stamp from the US Fish and Wildlife Service: “No federally listed species under our jurisdiction is known or likely to occur in the project area.”

The 6-1-2011 PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Letter indicates that while “species or resources of concern are located within the vicinity of the project”, that “no impact is likely” (to those species or resources) from the construction.

The 6-13-2011 PA Fish & Boat Commission Letter indicates that “any construction activities affecting the waterway should take place between April 15 and October 15 in order to allow turtles to avoid the project area while they are active.”

The PA Dept of Environmental Protection Fact Sheet on Vegetation and Erosion Control of Dams shows that no trees, brush or woody vegetation are allowed on a dam’s earthen embankment, or within 10 feet of the base.  Grass is the recommended cover.


Wetlands & Drainage:

The 5-19-2011 Wetland Delineation Report is 58 pages, and warrants closer review!  We do know that whatever wetlands are impacted by the construction will need to be “swapped” by repairing or creating wetlands elsewhere- and one possibility is to improve the pond in the park.

The March 2011 Safety Review Plans (19 pages) show the wetlands, the “limits of disturbance” of construction, and where the protective silt fence will be.  They outline plans for erosion and sediment pollution control and construction procedures, and discuss materials to be used.

The 4-29-2011 Drainage Report is a technical 74 page assessment, with the conclusion “The design of the stormwater system for Third Street over the dam will meet the applicable design standards as presented within this narrative.”


Historical Impact

The 2002 Phase I Archaelogical Survey (55 pages) had no significant findings, and concluded that no further archaelogical study was needed.

The March 2004 Pennsylvania Department of Transportation Section 2002 Evaluation (39 pages) details the archaeological and historic surveys done of the project site.  The documents include the 2001 PA Historic Resource Survey of the park, and the subsequent determination by the PA Historical and Museum Commission on June 25, 2002 that Glen Providence Park is eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places!

Despite this, the 2003 Determination of Effect Report (46 pages) includes the assessment of the PA Historical and Museum Commission that while the project “results in Historic Property Affected”, the “proposed project will have no adverse effect” to the park.


Questions & Answers about the project:

Questions?  We had many!  Posted on the Borough website are 18 pages of the engineers’ answers to questions submitted to them.  Thank you to the engineers for their answers, and the Borough for posting them.  We condensed the answers into about 4 pages in our Q&A About the Bridge/Dam.  Review the answers and see what follow-up questions you have!


Where We Are:

The 6-10-2011 Schedule shows where the engineers are in the process of completing their studies and designs, and getting approval from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (PADEP).  The engineers will need to submit Environmental Documentation to the PADEP for review.  Once that happens, the project will be advertized in the PA Bulletin for a 30 day comment period.  If significant comments are received, a meeting may be scheduled by the PADEP.

The last Cost Estimate was for $3.2 million.

In November 2011, PennDOT clarified that their 80% funding will apply to any reasonable option that Media Borough chooses to remediate the 3rd Street Bridge/Dam, including the removal of the dam.

In January 2012,  Media Borough Council appointed 9 community members to the Third Street Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC), to aid Borough Council in making an informed decision about the best course for the Third Street Bridge and Broomall’s Dam.  The CAC met for 10 consecutive weeks from January through March.  Each meeting was open to the public, and the meeting minutes are posted on the Borough website.  As a part of the CAC’s research, they conducted a public survey, and held a public meeting on March 5.  The CAC presented a report of their findings to Borough Council in April 2012, showing public support for dam removal and stream restoration.

On May 10, 2012, there was a Borough Council Special Meeting, when 81% of the residents who spoke expressed support for dam removal and stream restoration with a pedestrian bicycle greenway.

On May 17, 2012, the 2012-2013 Borough Council voted 5-2 to replace the dam and roadway, citing the Stipulation Agreement signed by the 2010-2011 Borough Council.

At a June 20 Special Meeting, the projects engineers clarified what decisions need to be made by Borough Council for the engineers to proceed with the dam design.

On September 20, 2012, the 2012-2013 Borough Council voted 4-3 for a compromise dam design to create a 28′ wide dam crest, with a lane for one-way traffic from Upper Providence to Media, and a lane for pedestrians and bicycles.  Friends of Glen Providence Park decided to support this compromise, as explained in our Letter to the Editor.  On September 28, Broomall’s Lake Country Club filed a Petition for Contempt against Media Borough, alleging this vote did not re-establish a thoroughfare pursuant to the Stipulation Agreement. Delaware County is not a party to the Petition for Contempt. A response to the Petition is due October 18.


Updated 9-27-2011… updated all links to their new locations on the Borough’s snazzy new website!

Updated 10-12-2011… with link to our condensed Q&A document. 

Updated 2-20-2012… with information about the November 2011 PennDOT meeting, and the formation of the CAC.

Updated 9-12-2012… updated project status and added upcoming vote on the dam width.

Updated 10-12-2012… with information about the vote on the dam design, and BLCC’s Petition for Contempt.

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