The Delaware Department of Transportation recently received an award of $275,000 from the Federal Highway Administration to support the replacement of a deficient bridge in Blackbird.

DelDOT received the grant for using an innovative material, Ultra-High Performance Concrete, overlay for the bridge over Blackbird Creek.

“Making smart investments in the roads, highways and bridges that so many Delawareans use and depend on every day improves our local infrastructure and also saves taxpayer dollars in the long run,” U.S. Sen. Tom Carper said. “By using advanced technologies, we can build a more modern and more sustainable bridge that is stronger and will require fewer repairs in the years to come. The First State is leading the way by not just fixing the infrastructure of today, but by building the infrastructure of the future, and I’m pleased that the Federal Highway Administration is supporting our efforts.”

The grant is a result of DelDOT’s efforts to use new technologies and employ advanced materials to improve Delaware’s infrastructure, said U.S. Sen. Chris Coons.

“The use of Ultra-High Performance Concrete for a bridge over Blackbird Creek is the kind of modern approaches the U.S. Department of Transportation wants states to be using as we work to upgrade our nation’s infrastructure,” he said.

U.S. Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester said investing in new technologies in infrastructure is critical to the future of our country. I commend DelDOT for utilizing Ultra-High Performance Concrete for the Blackbird Creek Bridge,” Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester said. “This grant will help construct a high-quality, modernized bridge while incentivizing states to invest in the latest technologies on the market.”

Zack Excavating Inc. of Smyrna was awarded a bid of $1,024,801.25, the lowest of five bids received. The contractor will replace the bridge structure beginning Aug. 7, with a full road closure on Blackbird Station Road between Grears Corner and Blackbird Forest roads. This project involves the replacement of the existing corrugated metal pipe arches with pre-stressed concrete box beams on concrete stub abutments with the Ultra-High Performance Concrete overlay.

Additional work will also include minor reconstruction of the roadway approaches, installation of guardrails, and the placement of riprap in the stream to prevent erosion. The total contract duration is 89 calendar days, which also includes the advance work of clearing, grubbing and relocating the utilities. The roadway is anticipated to be reopening by mid-September, pending weather.

Detour signage will be posted.