MEETINGS SET FOR SOUTHERN BELTWAY PROJECT
THAT WOULD LINK I-79 AND THE MON/FAYETTE EXPRESSWAY
Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission will hold three open house public
meetings this month to present for public review and comment its latest
information on the proposed Southern Beltway Project between Interstate 79
at the Washington/Allegheny County line and the Mon/Fayette Expressway
interested in the project may attend anytime between 4 and 8 pm on
Tuesday, Oct. 8 at Cecil Township Municipal Building; Tuesday, Oct. 15 at
Finley Middle School on Pa. Route 88 in Finleyville; and Thursday, Oct 17
at Canon-McMillan High School in Canonsburg.
same information will be presented at each location. The Turnpike
Commission has scheduled meetings at three different sites, and on
different dates, to facilitate public involvement.
is an opportunity to see the detailed alternatives carried forward for
further study after our last public meetings for this project in August
1999, and to see what properties may be affected,” said Thomas A. Fox,
the Turnpike’s Public Involvement Manager. “We will show how these
alternatives, and refinements we are considering in specific areas,
compare to each other in terms of various impacts.”
reviewing public input, Turnpike planners and consulting engineers will
focus on preparation of a Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) and
the identification of a Recommended
Preferred Alternative. This
process includes an ongoing dialog with state and federal resource
agencies as well as local municipal officials.
studies, which began in March 2000, will continue. The Turnpike intends to
circulate the DEIS for public review and comment in Summer 2003.
Ultimately, the selection of an alignment for the limited-access toll road
will be made by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway
Administration (FHWA). The target date for that action, known as a Record
of Decision, is Summer 2004.
under study for the project traverse parts of Cecil Township, Peters
Township, Canonsburg Borough, North Strabane Township, Nottingham
Township, and Union Township, all in Washington County.
at the public meetings will include large-scale maps showing tentative
right-of-way lines and proposed interchanges. The informal open-house
format will allow citizens to examine mapping and other informational
materials, and to question those manning the displays, at their leisure.
Interstate 79-to-Mon/Fayette Expressway Project is one of three Southern
Beltway projects being developed by the Turnpike Commission at the
direction of the Pennsylvania General Assembly.
of the three projects is being designed with stand-alone utility to
address local traffic needs but also would interconnect to form a beltway
approximately 30 miles long, extending south and east from Pittsburgh
International Airport to the mid-Monongahela River Valley.
Findlay Connector, which would complete the first six miles (from the Pa.
Route 60 Expressway at the airport to U.S. Route 22) of that
quarter-circle, is on track to go to construction next year.
of a DEIS for the middle Southern Beltway Project, between Route 22 and
Interstate 79, is scheduled for Spring 2003.
collective costs for the Southern Beltway are estimated at $896 million.
The Turnpike’s current financial commitment totals $228 million – to
complete the Findlay Connector by 2006 and to advance the two other
projects through a Record of Decision.