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Pittsburgh Bridge Collapse: City Shuts Down Public Observation Area Indefinitely

By: KDKA-TV News Staff

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) -- Just a few days after opening, city officials are closing down the observation area of the Fern Hollow Bridge collapse site in Frick Park indefinitely.

It is being closed so contractors can begin setting up large equipment on Forbes Avenue in order to clear away the fallen structure and eventually begin rebuilding it, city officials said.

"In the interest of protecting the public, pedestrians and vehicles will not be allowed on the stretch of Forbes off of S. Dallas leading to the site," the city said.

The observation area opened on Monday afternoon on the Squirrel Hill side of the collapse site in order to create a safe place for the public to view the ruins of the bridge. Many people had been trying to view the site from the hills and wooded trails in the park.

"That (area) can be very unstable, especially as the weather changes and the ground becomes muddy," Acting Public Safety Director Lee Schmidt said earlier this week.

The city's Department of Mobility and Infrastructure is monitoring the area and will make adjustments to signal timing as needed, the city said.

In Frick Park, Tranquil Trail is still closed within a 100 yard perimeter of the collapse site. Undercliff Trail is also closed. Clayton Loop, Biddle Trail, and Homewood Trail remain open.

In addition to contractors beginning work on the site, the NTSB is still actively investigating.

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