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Location: Johnstown, PA

Fiberglass Pedestrian Bridges on the Ghost Town Trail

Where trains once passed between Blacklick and Ebensburg, Pennsylvania, hikers, bikers and other nature lovers now enjoy Ghost Town Trail. A 2017 8-mile trail extension gave Bedford Reinforced Plastics the opportunity to bid on two trail bridges for a local Cambria County Conservation & Recreation Authority project. The company was selected as the partner for both bridges.

M•E•2 Pedestrian Bridges

Challenge

The rail-to-trail conversion follows Blacklick Creek, crossing over the stream and roads at several points along the route. The planned trail extension called for two bridges, one measuring 190 feet and the other 60 feet. It’s estimated that 80,000 users enjoy over 40 miles of designated National Recreation Trail each year. The hiking and cycling trail bridges would need to stand up to all four seasons for decades to come.

Solution

Cambria County Conservation & Recreation Authority and their contractor, Ray Winters & Sons, partnered with Bedford for two M•E•2 pedestrian bridges. About 3,300 square feet of fiberglass reinforced plastic (FRP) decking and 500 feet of custom fiberglass handrails were made for the project. FRP was chosen because it requires virtually no maintenance, making it ideal for a trail bridge. Both fiberglass trail bridges were completed in 2017. The Ghost Town Trail was named the 2020 Pennsylvania Trail of the Year.