Maclay Street Bridge Decay

Every day I cross the Maclay Street bridge on my way to work and on my way home. I’ve noticed how overgrown the weeds have gotten and how they seemed to have taken over the sidewalks. Finally, I found myself sitting on the bridge in traffic and looked over to my left. I was looking through the side of the bridge to the railroad tracks below.


How do things get this bad? I mean, if your house had a hole this big in the wall, and you found yourself looking outside, wouldn’t you fix it?

Following are a series of photos I took as I walked across the bridge. Hopefully this gains some awareness to the fact that this area is in dire need of attention. I hope to schedule a public/community cleanup day in the near future. If the city isn’t going to do it, then let the concerned citizens of Harrisburg spearhead the initiative and accomplish things.



This is the back of a large TV sitting in the weeds along the sidewalk of the bridge.

More trash sitting on the sidewalk.

The concrete of the bridge has worn away exposing the rebar of the structure of the bridge.

Not sure what kind of repair job this is. I wouldn’t be proud of this workmanship.

A battery and cigarette butt.

Steel plate placed over something with macadam holding it in place. Hope they don’t need easy access.


Missing some rails in this section.

A man pushing his bike through the weeds of the sidewalk. Doesn’t seem like a pleasant place to ride/walk.


A vine growing through the side of the bridge breaking the concrete apart.

An orange barrier sits along the intersection of Maclay and 7th Streets so that the bridge can be blocked off when the street floods.


A fire hydrant sits among the weeds of Maclay Street.

Weeds growing out of the concrete traffic island at Maclay and 7th Street making it difficult to see traffic coming from different directions.

Trash along the sidewalk.

Trash along the bridge near the Pennsylvania Farm Show.

The sidewalk disappears below the weeds along the Maclay Street bridge near the Pennsylvania Farm Show. Makes for a difficult and unpleasant walk.

Weeds and trash along the Maclay Street bridge.

View the entire Maclay Street Bridge photo set on Flickr.


  1. Reply
    Ammon October 3, 2011

    This is a shame. Thanks for your efforts and initiative in getting the cleanup started.

  2. Reply
    Nick Siegl December 28, 2015

    Hello Jonathan

    I was looking at the MacClay Street bridge on December 24, 2015 and noticed that significant repairs had recently been made to the sidewalks since your photos were taken in 2011. The steel plates embedded in asphalt are gone from the sidewalks and I was unable to find the hole in the parapet wall through which you could see track. There’s still a lot of trash along the street.

    There’s a question of ownership and responsibility. Does the bridge belong to Norfolk Southern? To the City of Harrisburg? or to PennDOT?

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