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Ben Franklin Bridge Sandblasting Project Finished, Old City Neighbors Thrilled

By Jim Melwert

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) --- Getting across the Ben Franklin Bridge can be a headache as work continues on the PATCO tracks, but a milestone of sorts has passed for Old City residents who live by the Bridge.

In a letter to residents here by the bridge when the construction began, the DRPA warned of high levels of noise during the sandblasting and painting of the bridge. That was scheduled to go through tomorrow, but the DRPA says they finished the painting on Sunday.

That's good news to Anusha and Anand, who live right next to the bridge:

"It's like the train going on top of the bridge all the time," Anusha says. Anand agrees, "It's horrible, it's like sometimes we can't even hear each other, you know?"

ben franklin bridge
The Ben Franklin Bridge seen from Old City. credit cbs

Not that anyone who lives by the Ben Franklin Bridge expects peace and quiet, but the two say the construction can be jarring:

"It's at the most oddest of times, like early in the morning when you need you peace and calm."

"Yeah, I don't think they have any time constraints, they just do it whenever they can."

Just ask John, who lives in a building right next to the bridge. "It got amazing," he says. "I mean, you literally had to sit in your living room with your aircraft headphones on because it was so noisy. I mean, you couldn't open your windows."

He says the paint fumes, depending on the wind, could also be brutal. But he says that's life in the city, and that's life next to a great big bridge.

This phase, the track construction, goes through October 21st, with the DRPA warning of low to moderate noise, 24 hours a day.

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