Route 93, Broad St., Hazleton Betterment Project, Luzerne County

PennDOT District 4 welcomes you to the Route 93 Broad St., Hazleton Betterment Project website.We encourage you to use this as a resource for accurate and timely project information.



PROJECT OVERVIEW


PURPOSE OF THE PROJECT:
  • To improve the safety of drivers and pedestrians by adding turning lanes to Route 93 in order to improve the flow of traffic, thereby making travel safer. The formula includes using lighting, crosswalks, updated traffic signals and pavement markings toward this same end.
  • To enhance the downtown, make improvements within the right-of-way while minimizing impact on residents and businesses.

Project Overview Map


PROJECT TIMETABLE:

  • Project was bid Sept. 30, 2010
  • Contractor: Pennsy Supply (Slusser Brothers) with a bid of $27.4 million.
  • Notice to Proceed: December 2010. Major construction begins in 2011.
  • Anticipated Completion: Late 2013

PROJECT LOCATION:

  • Luzerne County
  • Broad Street (PA Route 93) in Hazleton, West Hazleton
  • The project limits are from Washington Ave (15th Street) in West Hazleton through Hazleton to SR 424, the Hazleton Beltway.
  • Overall project length is 18,856.00 linear feet or 3.571 miles in length.

PROJECT DESCRIPTION:
(See Construction Schedule Map below.)
There are 3 sections to this project: The Residential area (West Hazleton), the Downtown city, and Terrace Heights.
Main areas and intersections include:

Residential area:

  • 15th St./Washington Ave.
  • Monroe Ave.
  • Winters Ave. at the bend in West Hazleton

Downtown city:

  • Diamond Ave and Route 924 (W. Hazleton Boro/City of Hazleton line)
  • Lincoln Ave. and Hazleton Shopping Center
  • Broad St. & Route 309 (Church St.)
  • Poplar St. at railroad crossing
  • Stockton Rd. @ Broad by the hospital. (Hospital will concurrently do its own work.)

Terrace Heights section:

  • Hazleton General Hospital to just before the Route 424 intersection.
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IMPROVEMENTS

  • ROADWAY: Widening for four lanes and turning lanes at three intersections. The travel lanes will become 11 feet and parking spaces widened from seven to 8 feet.
  • SIDEWALKS: Brick sidewalks will be removed. Concrete sidewalks will be added throughout the corridor. Downtown sidewalks will be about 8 feet wide and will be placed to the building, rather than cut. Sidewalks in West Hazleton, which are not as wide, will be cut anywhere from 2 feet to not at all. Each intersection along the course will also be changed: the sidewalk will bulb out as a safety feature for pedestrians. Bulb-outs provide safety because they bring the pedestrian closer to the intersection, so it's not as far to walk, and drivers tend to slow down. “Bulbing out” will take away some existing parking spaces. There are parking lots incorporated into this project. All crosswalks will be lined and will have enhanced lighting. All sidewalks will be restored during various phases of the construction project; some areas may not be restored until a later phase.
  • TREES: The trees along the project will be removed, many because they are causing sidewalks to buckle.They will be replanted at 2:1 ratio. The tree that will be planted will be a type that does not have roots that protrude upward. Not only will the roots on these trees grow downward, but the trees will not have an “umbrella” effect that hides businesses behind them. They have been approved by the local tree society.
  • RELATED: Drainage, concrete curbing, driveway and side street bituminous pavement adjustments, parking lot construction. Metered parking will remain.
  • SIGNALS: There will be 17 traffic signals along the 3½-mile project area from Washington Avenue (15th Street) in West Hazleton to the entrance to Hazleton General Hospital. The hospital will get one of two new signals. Other signal locations are the intersection of Broad and Poplar streets, where a concrete dividing wall will be removed. The 15 existing signals will be updated with new LED equipment and will be synchronized with each other, meaning they will change in a coordinated fashion so that traffic flows in an orderly manner. The 17 signalized intersections will be interconnected with provisions for preemption for emergency vehicles.
  • LIGHTING: The new lighting is decorative lighting but will eliminate the uneven lighting and shadows that impact a driver's vision.The bases for the lights have been eliminated from the project because of cost, but businesses will be offered the opportunity to buy the base for the streetlight nearest to their business. Each of the new decorative streetlights will have an electrical outlet near its base, which merchants can use for Christmas lights or other decorations that require electricity. A city ordinance will regulate the use of the electricity from the poles, making it available only at night.
  • TECHNOLOGY: These features will not become apparent until 2012 or 2013:
    * Speed limit signs will have a digital readout to tell motorists how fast they're traveling.
    * Walk signals will have audible countdowns to tell pedestrians how much time they have to cross the street.
  • SURFACE TREATMENT: Bituminous wearing course overlay 1 ½ inches depth , milling 1- 1/2” depth; full-depth pavement replacement variable width consisting 1- ½ inch depth bituminous HMA wearing course, 2-1/2 inch depth HMA binder course and 9 inches of cement treated permeable base course.
  • RAILROAD: Poplar St will have a new railroad crossing. The bifurcation will be eliminated separating lanes (by the Art League.) A modified cross-slope will be used in the roadway.
  • FINISHING WORK & AESTHETICS: New trash receptacles that match the décor of the project will be made by students at the Keystone Job Corps Center in Drums will be installed. Benches will be added at a later time.
  • NIGHT WORK: Currently there is no nighttime work scheduled because it almost doubles the cost of construction. Contractors who work during off-peak hours have to pay a night differential. Quality of the final product is better in the daytime. Only the final paving - because it is so disruptive - will be done at night.
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CONSTRUCTION NOTES & SCHEDULE:
  • The project will begin near St. Francis Church at the intersection of North Broad Street and Washington Avenue/SR 924/15th St. in West Hazleton. It will continue to Madison Avenue on the east side. The actual starting locations have not been determined yet.
  • The contractor will be doing sections of two or three blocks at a time. Each section will take six to eight weeks to complete. If the contractor uses more than one crew at a time, there will be 3 to 4 work zones. Work could occur on the same side of the street or switch to the opposite side.
  • Disruptions will be kept to a minimum as much as possible in order to get the work done in a timely manner.
  • Driveway access will be maintained for retail and residential before and during construction.
  • The intersection with Washington Avenue will get a right turn lane, while Monroe Avenue in West Hazleton and Cedar, Poplar and Church streets in the city will have left-turn lanes.
VIEW CONSTRUCTION SCHEDULE MAP
Update 4/19/11:
Utility relocation work continues in West Hazleton from Washington Ave. to Winters Ave.

Electrical foundation work will begin this week starting from Route 424 (Arthur Garner Parkway) near Stacie Drive back towards town (Hazleton Hospital). This work will be mostly shoulder work and should have a minor impact on traffic.

Barrier placement begins for pavement widening in the Terrace/Heights section of the project (Hazleton) from Route 424 (Arthur Garner Parkway) to the Hazleton Bone and Joint Offices on Tuesday May 3. Prep work for barrier placement will begin Monday, May 2, with minor lane shifts, lane marking changes and barrel placement. Access to local business and residences will be maintained. Drivers are urged to keep alert for changing traffic patterns and stopped vehicles. All work for the traffic changes should be completed Tuesday, May 3. All work is weather dependant. Expect single lane traffic and delays both days from 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

General working hours throughout the project are 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mon-Fri.

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Second Update 4/7/11:
(Adapted from a story published in the Hazleton Standard Speaker 4/6/11and updated PennDOT staff reports.)

The downtown sections that are not going to be under construction this season will have a rough, thin coat to help alleviate some of the existing surface irregularities. This is not a smooth, final coat. Paving will be completed before the end of April, weather permitting.

Utility work, including pipe installation and replacement, is ongoing. Construction crews will work four 10-hour days most of the work week. The utility work for this year’s construction will be completed by June 1. Pipe installation and replacement is set to start in the Terrace/Heights section, Hazleton, Monday (4/11) and will continue throughout the construction season. Work is Monday through Friday (Five 10-hour days).

The project will be completed concurrently in three sections over a three-year span. Sections on one side of the road for several blocks will be addressed and will be completed in two to three months.

The main section of downtown Hazleton will be reconstructed over two years. Renovations on the south side of Broad Street, between Vine and Cedar streets, will be completed in late spring and early summer so as not to interfere with either the Downtown Car Cruise in early August, or Funfest, in mid-September.

The north side of Broad Street, between Vine and Cedar, will be done during the same time period in 2012.

The east side of Broad Street, from the Hazleton General Hospital to the Arthur Gardner Parkway, will also be done later this year.

Even though one side of the street downtown will be done a year ahead of the other side, the new lane will not open until the area is fully striped (lines painted) and signaled, which will not happen until the other extra lane is built.

Other work will be done outside downtown later in 2011.

By July, crews will begin the other side of West Hazleton, as well as the south side, from Diamond Avenue to Vine Street, including the Hazleton Shopping Center, and the other side of the project near the hospital, from East Street to the Arthur Gardner Parkway.

In 2012, the east, or south side, from Madison Avenue in West Hazleton to Vine Street in Hazleton, and the south side of Cedar Street to the hospital.

Then, in 2013, the other sides of the last two project sites will wrap up.

All of the buildings in the corridor slated for demolition will be torn down this year. The only building that must come down this year is the former CAN DO Advertising building at 1-3 N. Broad St., West Hazleton. However, because the demolition contractor wants to mobilize only once, all of the buildings will be torn down this year. No date has been set for the start of demolition.

Other properties slated to be razed for the project include: 244-246 E. Mine St., Hazleton, a double house at the corner of Mine and Poplar streets; 231-237 E. Mine St, Hazleton, including a double house at Broad and Poplar streets, the former Danny's Market on Mine Street, and two garages; two double homes at 20-22 N. Cedar St.; and 24-26 N. Cedar St. and a garage on that property.

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4/4/11: Inlet and pipe placement work beginsin the Terrace/Heights section of the project in Hazleton Monday (4/4).Minor traffic affect expected with one lane traffic at times. Working hours 7:00 am - 5:00 pm Mon-Fri. Work continues in West Hazleton area and Terrace/Heights section of Hazleton for utility relocations.
3/14/11: Long-term construction signing is scheduled to be placed throughout the project this week in preparation for regular construction activities.Transfer of utilities to new poles is progressing in the Terrace section between Cox. St. and SR 424 (Arthur Gardner Parkway) and should be complete in the next few weeks. Test pits and saw cutting will take place in this same area starting late this week into next week in preparation for drainage work to begin the week of March 28.Preliminary sidewalk work will take place at the theater in West Hazleton starting next week along with utility relocations continuing in the area between Washington/15th St. and S. Broad St.

3/3/11: Work is just about complete in the West Hazleton area for tree removal. Tree removal in Hazleton from Vine St. to Laurel St. is scheduled for tomorrow/Thursday (3/3).
Utility underground work is also scheduled for tomorrow/Thursday (3/3). between Locust St and Vine St. Expect minor impacts to travel lanes and slowed traffic.
All work is scheduled from 7:30am to 4:00pm.

2/15/11: Tree removal work has begun in the West Hazleton part of the project from Washington/15th St. to Madison Ave. This work will provide the overhead utilities access to relocate their lines to the newly-installed poles and clear the way for the contractor to begin the roadway work in late March.

The utilities are making good progress with relocating their lines to the new poles in the Hazleton terrace section of the project from the Hazleton Hospital to Route 424. Construction in this area should begin early April.

2/7/11: Planning and utility adjustments are fully underway on the Broad St project.
We are hoping that the forecast for an early spring holds true as the contractor is prepared to begin work as early as mid-March.
Questions and inquiries have been coming into the project email on a regular basis, and we are happy to provide any information to those who request it.

1/24/11: Contractor will demolish a double-block home at 501/503 Broad St. SINGLE LANE TRAVEL at 15th/Washington/Rte 924. Building is across from the laundromat on 15th St. at this four-way intersection. Because parking and a travel lane will be eliminated for safety and debris removal, the area will be tight but traffic will be maintained. Work will be Monday (1/24), Tuesday (1/25) and possibly Wed. (1/26), depending on progress and weather, 7am to 5pm. Watch for flaggers. Expect changing traffic patterns and minor delays. Pedestrians are directed to use the opposite side of the street.

WORK SCHEDULE IS SUBJECT TO CHANGE PENDING WEATHER. CONDITIONS WILL BE EVALUATED DAILY.

  • The Terrace section begins in the spring and will go quickly because there is no sidewalk construction.
  • Crews will work on the south side of Broad Street (in Hazleton), between Vine and Cedar streets in 2011, and the north side in 2012, so as not to interfere with the downtown car cruise or Funfest. They will also work the east side of Broad Street, east, from the hospital to the beltway/Arthur Gardner Parkway.
  • Even though one side of the downtown street will be done a year ahead of the other side, the new lane won't be opened until the area is fully striped and signaled.
  • The construction project will begin March 2011 through late 2013.
  • In 2012, work will be done on the east (south) side, from Madison Avenue (in West Hazleton) to Vine Street (in Hazleton), and the south side of Cedar Street to the hospital. In July, work will be on the other side of West Hazleton, the south side, from Diamond Avenue to Vine Street, including the Hazleton Shopping Center, and near the hospital, from East Street to the beltway.
  • In 2013, the other sides of the last two project sites will end the job.
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DEMOLITION & RIGHT-OF-WAY ACQUISITIONS:
1/24/11: Contractor will demolish a double-block home at 501/503 Broad St. SINGLE LANE TRAVEL at 15th/Washngton/Rte 924. Building is across from the laundromat on 15th St. at this four-way intersection. Because parking and a travel lane will be eliminated for safety and debris removal, the area will be tight but traffic will be maintained. Work will be Monday (1/24), Tuesday (1/25) and possibly Wed. (1/26), depending on progress and weather, 7am to 5pm. Watch for flaggers. Expect changing traffic patterns and minor delays. Pedestrians are directed to use the opposite side of the street.

Contractor has begin to tear down six of the 11 total structures this winter. The properties to be demolished include a large former miner rooming house at Broad and Poplar streets, plus some garages on the property. Also, properties behind Lackawanna College at Broad and Cedar streets (on the west side of Cedar Street), the CAN DO Advertising building at McKenna's Corners in West Hazleton and a double home on the northeast corner of Broad Street and Washington Avenue are slated to go.
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PHOTO GALLERY

Project Photos

Project Drawings


TRAVEL & TRAFFIC INFORMATION


Vehicle and pedestrian traffic should be aware of changing traffic patterns. Stay out of work zones; do not drive or walk on the construction side of any barricade.

Temporary road repairs may be uneven and steel plates may be present to protect the construction area. Vehicles, motorcycles and pedestrians should travel cautiously thru these areas at all times.

Patience is asked while the project progresses.

Two lanes of traffic will be maintained during mainline construction, one in each direction.
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CONTACTS



JOIN THE PROJECT EMAIL LIST


To receive regular information on the progress of this project as it become available, please email jamay@pa.gov. In the subject line, put "Broad St. Project."
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4/19/2011