Keller’s Covered Bridge, the original single-lane single-span Burr-arch wooden truss carrying Rettew Mill Road over Cocalico Creek, is a beautiful historic structure, but its 5-ton weight restriction, limited vertical and horizontal clearance, and insufficient sight distance prohibited it from adequately meeting modern-day transportation needs. Ephrata Township needed to replace this bridge in order to significantly improve public safety and mobility, but the structure’s National Register status and its environmentally sensitive setting posed major constraints on the design, permitting, and construction.
RETTEW replaced the bridge with a new two-lane, two-span prestressed-concrete box-beam bridge on a new alignment. The firm also coordinated the careful disassembly of the original covered bridge, which the Township will restore and reassemble for use 2 miles downstream on Middle Creek Road. This historic structure relocation will allow Lancaster County not only to reuse the bridge and continue to enjoy its nostalgic charm but also to reopen Middle Creek Road, which has been closed for 15 years.