Rating:
1 vote

Dreibelbis Station Covered Bridge 38-06-07

Photos 

Approach

Photo taken by Mappee Pritchard

BH Photo #112410

Map 

Street Views 

Facts 

Overview
Burr arch-truss bridge over Maiden Creek on Covered Bridge Road
Location
Berks County, Pennsylvania
Status
Open to traffic
History
Built 1869; rehabilitated 1968
Design
Burr arch-truss
Dimensions
Length of largest span: 166.0 ft.
Total length: 168.0 ft.
Deck width: 14.4 ft.
Approximate latitude, longitude
+40.55444, -75.88000   (decimal degrees)
40°33'16" N, 75°52'48" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
18/425494/4489670 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Hamburg
Average daily traffic (as of 2016)
188
Inventory numbers
PA 06 7215 0745 9462 (Pennsylvania Bridge Management System number)
PANBI 05363 (Pennsylvania BRKEY bridge number on the 2011 NBI)
WGCB 38-06-07 (World Guide to Covered Bridges number)
BH 36311 (Bridgehunter.com ID)
Inspection report (as of July 2016)
Overall condition: Poor
Superstructure condition rating: Fair (5 out of 9)
Substructure condition rating: Satisfactory (6 out of 9)
Deck condition rating: Poor (4 out of 9)
Sufficiency rating: 16.7 (out of 100)
View more at BridgeReports.com

Update Log 

  • December 7, 2015: New Street View added by Erik Hoffman
  • March 3, 2014: New photos from Jack Schmidt
  • March 2, 2014: Photo imported by Dave King
  • February 25, 2008: Added by J.R. Manning

Sources 

  • J.R. Manning - thekitchenguy [at] sbcglobal [dot] net
  • Wikipedia
  • Dave King - DKinghawkfan [at] hotmail [dot] com
  • Jack Schmidt - jjturtle [at] earthlink [dot] net
  • Erik Hoffman - norcalroadswebsite [at] gmail [dot] com

Comments 

Dreibelbis Station Covered Bridge 38-06-07
Posted September 11, 2019, by Will Truax (Bridgewright [at] gmail [dot] com)

No George, I cannot and do not agree.

For all the reasons I already spoke to on this DSCB thread in earlier discussion.

I've worked enough of these rehabs to know that a design team that chooses to know and understand these bridges can easily achieve a weight limit carrying capacity their clearance capacity might demand without a systems replacement that turns a though truss into a caricature of itself. A mere decoration that staddles a stringer bridge with a load rating far in excess of anything that will ever fit through it.

Such absurdities are why the new "Guidelines for Rehabilitating Historic Covered Bridges" were put to paper and made available for download in the cyber-sphere -

https://www.nps.gov/hdp/CoveredBridgeGuidelines2019.pdf

Dreibelbis Station Covered Bridge 38-06-07
Posted September 10, 2019, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

Sorry George, but the way I feel about it is once you take all of historical elements out of it just to make it traffic worthy you might as well either move it or tear it down and start new like Ohio does.

Dreibelbis Station Covered Bridge 38-06-07
Posted September 10, 2019, by George A Oakley (Georgeoakley49 [at] yahoo [dot] com)

Tony and Will,I only posted what was written in the local paper.As for the rehab in my eyes what is being done to the bridge will insure that this bridge is here for as long as is possible and at least they didn't demolish the bridge and replace it with a concrete eyesore.Wouldn't you agree?

Dreibelbis Station Covered Bridge 38-06-07
Posted September 7, 2019, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

$4.3 Mil for what will end up being a mostly modern "replica" of the former bridge? This is complete and utter insanity!

Will is spot on with his comments as to how PennDOT is handling this.

Dreibelbis Station Covered Bridge 38-06-07
Posted September 7, 2019, by George A Oakley (Georgeoakley49 [at] yahoo [dot] com)

As per the local paper I have more information on this bridge.The total cost of the rehabilitation including design is $4.3 million.The parts of the bridge after it is disassembled will be sent to Lancaster County Timber Frames Inc.,a company that specializes in timber frames.This project began in March and is expected to be completed in the coming winter or spring.Along with the timber frame being removed,rehabilitated and re-erected the wooden decking,siding and roofing will be replaced.The existing masonry abutments will be replaced with stone-faced concrete abutments.As i mentioned in a previous article a steel beam support will be installed.This bridge was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1981.Here is some information I didn't know.In 1874,the Berks County Railroad,later called the Schuylkill and Lehigh Railroad was built along the eastern bank of the Maiden Creek,cutting through the Driebelbis family farm.A train depot,store,lumberyard,mill and an ice house were built near the bridge.This covered bridge is one of five in Berks County and 15th longest in the country.Also more than a half dozen members of the Theodore Burr Covered Bridge Society of Pennsylvania,based in Manheim,Lancaster County,were in attendance.

Dreibelbis Station Covered Bridge 38-06-07
Posted September 4, 2019, by George A Oakley (Georgeoakley49 [at] yahoo [dot] com)

Just saw on WFMZ69 news that this bridge has been taken apart and the truss frame has been lifted off of the abutments.According to the newscast steel beams will be installed underneath the bridge for support and the trusses will be rehabbed along with the rest of the bridge.Amazing how efficiently this bridge was lifted.Happened to see this on the newscast earlier today.If I wasn't watching I probably wouldn't have seen it.Any information on the progress of the rehab I will post here when I get it.

Dreibelbis Station Covered Bridge 38-06-07
Posted January 10, 2019, by George Oakley (Georgeoakley49 [at] yahoo [dot] com )

Okay,Will.Thanks for explaining everything to me.I see your point.

Dreibelbis Station Covered Bridge 38-06-07
Posted January 10, 2019, by Will Truax (Bridgewright [at] gmail [dot] com)

George, I spent a fair amount of time in your area while engaged in a preservation project on the Bertolet Saw Mill at the Daniel Boone Homestead, (I also spent seven months just over the MD line on a bridge restoration) in that time I familiarized myself with many Berks Bridges, including this one and others that have already been PennDOT'd.

Beyond the loss of the rare example Berks County typology Lower Lats, my secondary issues with this tact are that on other bridges where both the Abutments are replaced and the bridge is steel-stringerized, the workmanship on needed repairs to the truss framing tends to be poorly executed. (Look to Pine Grove none so far to the south as an example) On top of those concerns the added costs and much higher totals of this systems replacement approach adds to the sense for many that bridge rehabs are overly expensive.

It is the more harm than good finished product that concerns me.

Dreibelbis Station Covered Bridge 38-06-07
Posted January 9, 2019, by George Oakley (Georgeoakley49 [at] yahoo [dot] com )

Okay,Will.Being that I live near the bridge and they do publish work that is completed on bridges in the local paper i can actually look at the finished product.

Dreibelbis Station Covered Bridge 38-06-07
Posted January 9, 2019, by Will Truax (Bridgewright [at] gmail [dot] com)

George, I wasn't being quite so literal.

They have been driving this approach for six decades now, That being the case I routinely transmute the agencies name into a verb as a bit of word-play in describing the steel-stringerization of wooden bridges

Dreibelbis Station Covered Bridge 38-06-07
Posted January 9, 2019, by George Oakley (Georgeoakley49 [at] yahoo [dot] com )

Will,from what I read in the paper PennDOT is not doing the work.A contractor is so I think PennDOT is only making sure the contractor follows what was printed in the paper.

Dreibelbis Station Covered Bridge 38-06-07
Posted January 9, 2019, by Will Truax (Bridgewright [at] gmail [dot] com)

No they won't be "Saving as much of the original wood as possible" They will be PennDOT'ing it with their go-to Steel-Stringerization.

A needless sixty year failed experiment, (some bridges are now on their third set of steel decks & stringers) which is almost an absurdity. Ask a systems knowledgeable engineer to design rehab of a framed wooden floor system and you'll get a 10-ton rating, ask one who is not knowledgeable about such framing and they'll tell you it can't be done, and that a structural system which has carried traffic for a century and a half (this coming summer) needs to be replaced.

It's particularly sad in this instance being that there is a hyper-regional variation of interwoven Lower Lateral Bracing unique to Berks County and this rehab will eliminate yet one more of these rare examples from our shared Transportation Heritage.

Dreibelbis Station Covered Bridge 38-06-07
Posted January 8, 2019, by George Oakley (Georgeoakley49 [at] yahoo [dot] com )

By the way,Shirley Pisano mentioned a marriage which she thought was on this bridge.It was actually the Wertz Covered Bridge.

Dreibelbis Station Covered Bridge 38-06-07
Posted January 8, 2019, by George Oakley (Georgeoakley49 [at] yahoo [dot] com )

As per an article in today's paper where I live starting in April this bridge will be undergoing a $4 million rehabilitation which will close the bridge for 7 months ending by November of this year.After construction the weight limit will be increased from 3 tons to 20 tons.The bridge will be lifted off the abutments,taken apart,replace the bad parts and save as much original wood as possible.The rest of the pieces will be fabricated to retain the original look.The abutments will also be replaced.The rehabilitation will include parts or members of the bridges wood truss,its roof and siding.The existing wooden floor beams on the deck will be removed.Steel girders will be placed inside the bridge floor and a new timber deck will be placed on top of that.These steel girders will be hidden inside the structure and not seen when looking at the bridge.This rehabilitation will extend the life of the bridge.

Dreibelbis Station Covered Bridge 38-06-07
Posted July 10, 2017, by george oakley (georgeoakley49 [at] yahoo [dot] com)

As per an article printed in the Reading Eagle on 7/10/17 renovation of this bridge has been delayed.No notification has been given why.When i find out i will post any information i get.By the way,the article in the paper lists the length of this bridge as 172 feet,not 168 feet.Don't know which length is right.

Dreibelbis Station Covered Bridge 38-06-07
Posted November 26, 2016, by george oakley (georgeoakley49 [at] yahoo [dot] com)

Just read in today's Reading Eagle that the renovation of this bridge will begin in the spring of 2018 at a cost of $1.1 million and lasting for 6 months.To increase the bridge's weight limit of 3 tons the floor will be reinforced with steel support beams covered in wood and bridge abutments will be removed and replaced with reinforced concrete with stone facing.By increasing the bridge's weight limit this will allow emergency vehicles and buses to traverse the structure if necessary.Despite some opposition to using steel reinforcements in historic bridges it is confirmed that these reinforcements do help the bridges remain stable for longer periods according to Fred j. Moll who is a historian of the Theodore Burr Covered Bridge Society.A car breaking through the floor boards 4 years ago resulted in a monthlong closure and ensuing repairs.

Dreibelbis Station Covered Bridge 38-06-07
Posted November 7, 2016, by george oakley (georgeoakley49 [at] yahoo [dot] com)

As per an article printed in the Reading Eagle on 11-7-16 PENNDOT and Berks County will conduct an open house and display plans on rehabilitation of this bridge which will include rehabilitation of the existing structure and all necessary roadway approach work.The meeting will be held on 11-22-16 between 6:30 p.m to 8:00 p.m. at the Greenwich Township Building which is located at 775 Old Rte.22 in Lenhartsville,Pa.I listed the date,time and location for the meeting in case anybody is interested.

Dreibelbis Station Bridge
Posted June 5, 2010, by Shirley Pisano (ubwell [at] aol [dot] com)

Please forward any specific historic information to me. On May 23, 2010 my granddaughter was married at the bridge. Red covered bridge, think the name is actually Dreibelbis Station Bridge. Near Reading Pa on the Tulpehocken Creek or River? ? area. The pictures are appreciated and so will any further information. Thanking you in advance.

Shirley Pisano