Kathy Liebler

Manager, Public Affairs & Media Relations

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


Joe Agnello, (724) 755-5262, (724) 755-5142 fax
e-mail: jagnello@paturnpike.com

May 3, 2001


Another Four Miles of Turnpike's Growing Mon/Fayette Expressway 
System to Open on Friday, May 11

The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission will open at 11 AM Friday, May 11 the southernmost four miles of its 17-mile Mon/Fayette Expressway Project that will extend north from Interstate 70 in Fallowfield Township, Washington County to Pa. Route 51 in Jefferson Hills Borough, Allegheny County.

This four-mile stretch is located exclusively in Fallowfield Township and has a northern terminus at the expressway’s first interchange north of I-70. The interchange, signed as "Donora/Charleroi," is located at Coyle Curtin Road (State Route 2025).

Coyle Curtin Road is a popular east-west connector between Pa. Route 481 and Pa. Route 88 near the City of Monongahela, known locally as Mon City.

Toll rates will be 50 cents for two-axle vehicles and an additional 50 cents for each axle over two axles, but not more than $2.50 total. Automated, dual-height toll machines on the interchange’s northbound off-ramp and southbound on-ramp will accept coins, $1 and $5 bills and PTC commercial cards. Equipment will issue change and receipts.

Initially, Turnpike officials anticipate approximately 600 trips a day on the new section. Gross revenue for the first year of operation is estimated at $90,000.

"While this is a relatively short stretch of expressway we believe it will serve the public well as an alternative to circuitous and heavily signaled Route 88," said Turnpike Executive Director John T. Durbin. "In essence, this is a four-mile extension of the six-mile Turnpike 43 California Toll Road immediately south of  I-70 that opened in October 1990."

Durbin also noted the extension to Coyle Curtin Road will provide a quick link to Mon City and other key destinations, including Monongahela Valley Hospital and the Charleroi High School/Middle School campus.

One of the construction contracts for the I-70-to-Route 51 Mon/Fayette Project involved widening a three-quarter-mile segment of Coyle Curtin Road from the expressway interchange to Route 88. An additional 11-foot travel lane will allow cars and small trucks to pass larger vehicles traveling uphill (northeast) from the expressway interchange to Route 88.

Construction of the expressway north from I-70 to Coyle Curtin Road and related side road improvements cost approximately $70 million. Work included completion of Turnpike 43’s full cloverleaf interchange with I-70.

The most striking features on the four miles between I-70 and Coyle Curtin Road are dual bridges that carry the expressway over Maple Creek, the Wheeling & Lake Erie Railroad and SR 2016 (Old Route 71). They are 205 feet high and slightly over 1,000 feet long.

Momentarily, they will be the highest bridges on the entire 500-plus-mile Pennsylvania Turnpike system. The balance of the Mon/Fayette Project between I-70 and Route 51 has another set of dual bridges some 250 feet up.

By early 2002, when the remainder of the I-70-to-Route 51 Mon/Fayette Project should be ready for traffic, approximately 35 miles of the Mon/Fayette Expressway system will be operational. Ultimately, the system will measure more than 70 miles extending north to Interstate 376 in Pittsburgh and south to Interstate 68 near Morgantown, W.Va.


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