|Includes more than $28 million in improvements|
Indiana County, PA (June 28) ? PennDOT Engineering District 10, in cooperation with state and local officials, today broke ground to officially begin construction for the $28.1 million Route 22 Penn View Section improvement project in Burrell and West Wheatfield township, Indiana County.
"Once again we are here to celebrate another great day for the Transportation in Indiana County and the Western Pennsylvania Region," said Richard H. Hogg, P. E., District Executive. "The Penn View project is the next step in PennDOT's efforts to widen Route 22 from Ebensburg to Pittsburgh. Today, we draw one step closer to our goal of four lanes across Indiana County."
The project represents a significant safety and mobility improvement for Route 22. The existing Route 22 in this area is a two-lane roadway with truck climbing lanes provided at isolated locations along portions of the roadway. The current roadway is characterized by steep grades and poor sight distance. There is no physical separation between opposing traffic, and left-turn lanes are not provided.
The new roadway will provide four lanes (two in each direction) and a median with a barrier in the center on a 3.8 mile section of Route 22 from the Route 119 interchange to the Mount Tabor Church intersection. Access will be provided at key intersections and crossing movements will be limited to those locations. Sight distances will be improved through adjustments to the horizontal and vertical alignments. "Jughandles" will be provided at regular intervals to allow motorists to reverse direction on the highway. For the purpose of consistency with other projects currently on Route 22, a reverse jughandle configuration will be used, which requires drivers to enter a left-turn lane in the median and cross opposing traffic before entering the jughandle. This configuration is preferable in areas where signals are not warranted, because drivers are only required to cross two lanes of traffic and then reenter the highway in the right travel lane. This configuration also reduces required right-of-way and environmental impacts.
The prime contractor the project is New Enterprise Stone and Lime Company, Inc. of New Enterprise, PA. Construction is scheduled for completion in the fall of 2007.
The Penn View project is the next step in District 10's efforts to widen Route 22 to four lanes. The remaining project, the Clyde section, will be under construction in 2007, completing the Route 22 widening through Indiana County in 2009.
For more information on roadway construction and maintenance operations, access District 10's website at www.dot.state.pa.us, then click "regional information" and the "10" on the map. Weekly construction and maintenance schedules are posted on the site.