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Group challenges PennDOT evaluation to destroy historic Sheephole Bridge

By Louie Torres | Aug 24, 2017

PHILADELPHIA – A nonprofit organization is seeking to halt the destruction of a historical stone bridge in Bucks County.

Delaware Riverkeeper Network and the Delaware Riverkeeper, Maya van Rossum filed a complaint on July 27 in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania against Pennsylvania Department of Transportation; Federal Highway Administration; Gregory G. Nadeau, FHWA administrator in his official capacity; and Leslie Richards, PennDOT secretary citing the Department of Transportation Act.

According to the complaint, the plaintiffs are challenging PennDOT and the Federal Highway Administration's evaluation of the Headquarters Road Bridge Project, also known as Sheephole Bridge, in Bucks County. The suit states the bridge was recommended to be destroyed and replaced with a new, two-lane concrete structure.

The suit states the bridge is more than 200 years old and is "one of the last surviving examples of stone masonry bridge construction in the country." The plaintiffs allege federal laws and regulations require that the bridge be rehabilitated instead.

The plaintiffs seek declaration that the project is not in accordance with the law, order the defendants to stop any site clearance, court costs and any further relief the court grants. They are represented by Aaron Stemplewicz in Brisol and by L. Eden Burgess of Cultural Heritage Partners PLLC in Washington, D.C.

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania case number 2:17-cv-03348-RK

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Pennsylvania Department of Transportation U.S. District Court of Eastern District of Pennsylvania

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