Kathy Liebler
                        Director of Public Information

   C   O   M   M   I   S   S   I   O   N                N   E   W   S             R   E   L   E   A   S   E

    Contact: Kathy Liebler 717-939-9551 Ext. 2850                            September 17, 1996


        The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission today announced a major review of its overall technology program including its microwave and fiber optics projects that will provide the foundation of a new toll collection system and several other communications and information services.
        Commissioner James F. Malone said the Commission was taking the action to provide ample opportunity for its new Deputy Executive Director (DED) for Information Technology to revaluate and reassess the programs and projects.
        Robert L. Brown, hired in late June, is responsible for the deployment of new technology such as EZ Pass or electronic toll collection, Data Over Video and other technologies that will carry the Pennsylvania Turnpike into the 21st Century.
        Malone said, that as a result of the project review, the Commission will end its negotiations with Armstrong Fiber Optics Network (AFON), which began about two years ago. In October 1994, the Commission authorized contract negotiations with AFON for the design, construction and installation of a fiber optics network on the 506 mile Turnpike system.
        Brown said, "My job is to centralize projects and responsibilities and develop a master plan for all our technology initiatives, aligning them with the Commission's Strategic Business Plan. To do that, we must step back and take a long hard look at our current projects and what steps we must take to prepare for the future. Our planning process needs to be based on a logical and phased in approach that will allow us to accomplish our goals for the short term and the long term."
        Other projects under review include the Toll Road Information Management System (TRIMS) which is a maintenance inventory system and the Turnpike's Geographic Information System (GIS) which is used to locate and identify geography along the Turnpike system for engineering and planning, real estate management, maintenance and environmental projects.
        "As a member of a customer service organization such as the Pennsylvania Turnpike, I have an obligation to the Commission and our customers, to assure that the implementation of new technologies is accomplished in the most efficient and cost effective manner," he said.
        Brown came to the Turnpike from the Black and Decker World Headquarters located in Towson, MD., where he served as worldwide manager for strategic planning and systems development. He also held positions in information technology with Martin Marietta and TRW Corporation.


         P.O. Box 67676, Harrisburg, PA 17106-7676         Phone: (717) 939-9551         Fax: (717) 986-9649