Norfolk Southern agrees to repair 7 of Binghamton's most dilapidated railroad bridges
The railroad company Norfolk Southern has agreed to repair or replace seven of Binghamton’s most dilapidated railroad bridges. This comes after a city investigation, released in August, found many of the bridges are in disrepair.
HUNT-EAS, an engineering firm hired by the city, found that of the 25 bridges they inspected, a majority were in poor or severe condition. The report detailed crumbling concrete, exposed rebar, and rusted-out steel supports.
“For decades, residents have been complaining at all levels of government about the condition of these railroad bridges. They've had to deal with them,” Binghamton Mayor Jared Kraham said. “And for many, many decades, a lot of different people shrugged their shoulders and said, ‘There's nothing we can do.’”
Norfolk Southern owns most of the railroad bridges in Binghamton. The railroad company came under scrutiny earlier this year, after a fiery train derailment in Ohio. Now, the company has agreed to start repairs on seven of the city's bridges.
Crews have already begun work to repair concrete columns and parapets at the railroad bridge over Glenwood Avenue, one of the bridges flagged in the report as being in severe disrepair.
Kraham said he is pleased with how quickly the railroad company responded to the city’s report.
“Norfolk Southern has responded, not only with crews in Binghamton... but with a detailed plan of action to fix several of the worst bridges in the city of Binghamton,” Kraham said.
Residents can expect detours around the Glenwood Avenue bridge for the next few weeks as construction continues. Kraham said those repairs will be done by the end of this construction season.
Over the next year, Kraham said Norfolk Southern will also be repairing bridges on Jarvis Street, Murray Street, and Water Street. A full replacement of the railroad bridge over Front Street is planned for next year.
After the city released its report, the Federal Railroad Administration launched its own investigation into Binghamton’s railroad bridges, which is ongoing.