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: Joe Agnello, (412) 925-5462, (412) 925-5142 fax                          May 19, 1998

Note to radio stations:
Voice actualities relative to this
news release are available by calling the
Turnpike Information Broadcast Service (TIBS)
at 1-800-563-5425.


The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission today awarded Mosites Construction of Pittsburgh a $54,869,445 contract for Mon/Fayette Expressway construction work in Carroll Township, Washington County. It is the largest contract awarded so far for Mon/Fayette construction.

Mosites was the lowest of seven bidders for Construction Section 52E, which includes two sets of twin bridges nearly 200 feet high. Bids were opened on April 28, 1998. The deadline for completion of the work is October 19, 2001.

One set of bridges will measure about 1,800 feet in length and carry the expressway over Pigeon Creek, Conrail tracks and State Route 2023 (Park Avenue) three-quarters of a mile southwest of Park Avenue's intersection with Pa. Route 481. The other dual bridges will measure about 1,350 feet in length and carry the expressway over Township Road 854 (Hazelkirk-Valley Inn Road), Township Road 866 (Wisebecker Lane) and a Pigeon Creek tributary.

Mosites' contract also includes grading and drainage work necessary to construct a 1.231-mile section of the expressway, reconstruction of portions of Hazelkirk-Valley Inn Road and Wisebecker Lane, and pavement overlay on Park Avenue. Roadway pavement for this section of the expressway will be included in another construction contract.

Today's action marks the eighth construction contract awarded for the 17-mile Mon/Fayette Expressway Project that will link Interstate 70/Pa. Route 43 in

Fallowfield Township, Washington County with Pa. Route 51 in Jefferson Borough, Allegheny County.

As is customary with Turnpike Commission contracts, Mosites' contract includes significant dollars for services to be rendered by subcontractors owned primarily by minorities (Minority Business Enterprises) and women (Women Business Enterprises). MBEs are in line for more than eight percent of the contract amount (approximately $4.5 million). WBEs also are to receive approximately $4.5 million.

The value of all Mon/Fayette construction contracts awarded to date is approximately $245 million. That sum includes about $160 million worth of construction contracts for the I-70-to-Route 51 Project and six contracts totaling some $85 million for the Mon/Fayette Expressway's Mason Dixon Link in Fayette County.

It is expected that the eight-mile Pennsylvania leg of the Mason Dixon Link will open in late 1999 and that the 17-mile expressway between I-70 and Pa. Route 51 will open in late 2001. The West Virginia Department of Transportation is to design and construct the four miles of the Mason Dixon Link south of the Pennsylvania line.

Considering awards so far and current contract values, each of the Turnpike Commission's top four general contractors for Mon/Fayette construction work is a southwestern Pennsylvania company. They are Mashuda Corporation, based in Cranberry Township, Butler County; New Enterprise Stone & Lime Company of New Enterprise, Bedford County; Mosites Construction; and Dick Corporation, also based in Allegheny County.

Collectively, their contracts total nearly $210 million. Prior to today's award, New Enterprise Stone and Lime had the single largest general contract - $36.8 million awarded on December 16, 1997.

Ultimately, the Mon/Fayette Expressway is proposed to stretch some 70 miles north into Pittsburgh from Interstate 68 near Morgantown, WV.

Under assignment by the Pennsylvania General Assembly, the Turnpike Commission is developing the Mon/Fayette projects to improve mobility and economic opportunity in Fayette County and Monongahela River towns in Washington and Allegheny counties still rebounding from job losses in the steel mills and other industries.

Turnpike engineers and consultants are continuing to evaluate prospective alignments for two Mon/Fayette projects in the environmental study phase. They are a 15-mile expressway between Uniontown and Brownsville and a 24-mile expressway north from Jefferson that would fork to provide two connections to Interstate 376 (the Parkway East) in the Pittsburgh area.


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