Life will be a little different for people living near the collapsed Forbes Avenue bridge.
The consensus among residents is that while the loss of the bridge over Fern Hollow in Frick Park has created some inconveniences, they’ll adapt just fine. They don’t have a choice.
The vibe in nearby neighborhoods was about adjusting to the new reality: longer commutes from the Regent Square area to Squirrel Hill, Oakland and beyond.
Mildred Lopez of Park Place, a neighborhood near the bridge, said Sunday that people in the area were still in shock after Friday’s bridge collapse.
“It was close to utter disaster,” she said of the prospect of people dying during the collapse. Although none did, 10 people were injured.
“The attitude around here is to adjust and that there’s no deaths,” she said.
Port Authority has reworked its routes, and the City of Pittsburgh announced official detours in a news release Sunday.
According to the release, traffic routes and detours are:
• Avoid the area of the Fern Hollow Bridge collapse and the intersection of Forbes and South Braddock avenues.
• Local drivers should follow South Dallas Avenue to Penn Avenue to South Braddock Avenue.
• All regional traffic should use the Parkway East instead of Penn Avenue.
Officials do not know how long it will take to remove the bridge rubble and construct a new one. City Councilman Corey O’Connor estimated the project could take two years.
Residents off Briarcliff Road said they are accepting of traffic snarls. After all, they could have been walking their dogs or driving over the bridge when it collapsed.
One resident whose house is perched above the bridge said her house shook when the span collapsed.
Losing the bridge is a little inconvenient, but it’s not the end of the world, the resident added.
David Frank, 49, of Park Place said he will leave 45 minutes earlier Monday to go to work in Oakland.
“It’s a major route,” he said. “Not having a bridge will affect residents going to work, taking children to school and going to Squirrel Hill and Oakland.”
Mark Stawson, also of Park Place, will have to reroute his commute to reach his job in East Liberty.
A cyclist, Stawson noted Fern Hollow Bridge is part of the area’s bicycle route.
He anticipates a lot of traffic in his neighborhood and a three-year wait for a new bridge to reopen. Stawson said he hopes the city coordinates with PennDOT to prevent additional detours from other nearby road projects sending even more traffic to the area.
City officials have not given a timeline on when a new span could be built.
“It’s going to be a struggle for three years,” Stawson said.
Mary Ann Thomas is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Mary at 724-226-4691, [email protected] or via Twitter .