What to Know
The busy Walnut Street ramp to the Schuylkill Expressway eastbound will be closed for repairs until June 14.
The detour will force motorists through University City streets.
The ramp closure and dripping water onto I-76 are all part of a $104-million project to revamp the decking and bridges in the area.
Pack your patience if you use a busy ramp to access the Schuylkill Expressway in Philadelphia’s University City.
PennDOT is closing the Walnut Street ramp to eastbound Interstate 76 for the next nearly four weeks so that crews can resurface and structurally repair the ramp. The closure began Monday night and lasts until Friday, June 14.
The closure of the favorite ramp to hop onto I-76 toward South Philly and New Jersey coming from Center City means that drivers will need to make their way through University City instead.
“Motorists normally using the ramp will be directed west on Walnut Street, left on 38th Street to University Avenue, and then south on 34th Street to access the ramp to eastbound I-76,” PennDOT said in a news release.
You could also access I-76 east from Center City by using the South Street Bridge.
The 24/7 on-ramp closure comes as overnight lane restrictions and closures continue as crew work on the viaduct between 30th Street and University Avenue. (Details below)
PennDOT warned of significant backups and delays on detoured roads.
And, the Chestnut Street Bridge, heading into Center City, is set to close for a year starting in Mid-June, PennDOT said last week.
Those drivers still making their way along the busy Schuylkill Expressway may have also noticed another nuisance has returned. The drips from the overhead viaduct near 30th Street Station are back.
The water is being used to cure concrete on the Schuylkill Avenue viaduct over top I-76 between 30th and Walnut streets. The curing process, part of a $104-million Schuylkill Avenue Viaduct/Chestnut Street Bridge replacement project to redo the decking above the highway, is expected to be wrapped up Thursday, PennDOT spokesman Brad Rudolph said.
Similar work on the decking above sent water pouring down onto motorists, causing some quick window closing and swerving, last summer and fall.
The contractor, Buckley and Company, Inc., is working to reduce the amount of water pouring down on motorists below for any future work to be done, Rudolph said.
- Monday through Thursday from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m.: Until 11 p.m., westbound I-76 will be reduced to a single lane, then closed completely periodically each night from 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. between the South Street and Interstate 676 interchanges. During the closure, motorists will be directed to use the ramp from westbound I-76 to 30th Street, then follow Schuylkill Avenue to the ramp to westbound I-76 at Market Street.
- Monday through Thursday from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m.: the ramp from westbound I-76 to 30th Street may close periodically. When the ramp is closed, motorists will be detoured west on I-76, east on I-676 to the 22nd Street Exit, north on 22nd Street to the ramp to I-676 west, then east on I-76 to the 30th Street Exit.
- Monday through Thursday from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m.: Eastbound I-76 will be reduced to a single lane between the 30th Street and University Avenue interchanges.
- Monday through Friday from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.: The approach to the ramp from westbound I-76 to 30th Street will be shortened.