A new bridge built with an innovative material was finished last week over Blackbird Creek on Blackbird Station Road south of Townsend, and the road was reopened to traffic.

A new bridge built with an innovative material was finished last week over Blackbird Creek on Blackbird Station Road south of Townsend, and the road was reopened to traffic.

The bridge is just north of Blackbird Forest Road, about a mile west of U.S. Route 13.

The Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDOT) received an award of $275,000 from the Federal Highway Administration pay for part of the $1 million project to replace what was a deficient bridge.

DelDOT received the federal grant for using an innovative material, an ultra-high performance concrete overlay

Zack Excavating Inc. of Smyrna was awarded the bid of $1,024,801, the lowest of five bids received, DelDOT said in a press release.

Blackbird Station Road was closed for about a month during the project which included 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. The work also included minor reconstruction of the roadway approaches, installation of guardrails, and the placement of riprap in the stream to prevent erosion.

U.S. Senators Tom Carper and Chris Coons and Congresswoman Lisa Blunt Rochester applauded the project.

“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,” said Carper.

Coons said, “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.”

Blunt Rochester said federal grants like the one used in this project help with the construction of high-quality bridges while incentivizing states to invest in the latest technologies.