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

Contact:  

Christina Hampton (610) 292-3785,
Email: champton@paturnpike.com

May 10, 2001

 

PA TURNPIKE/I- 95 INTERCHANGE 
DRAFT ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENT
AVAILABLE FOR PUBLIC REVIEW STARTING MAY 11
Formal Public Hearing Scheduled for June

Philadelphia, (PA) Ė The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission announced today that the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) for the Pennsylvania Turnpike/Interstate 95 Interchange Project will be available for public review and comment from May 11 to July 2, 2001.

To give citizens an opportunity to review details of the projectís findings, copies of the DEIS will be available at various public locations, such as township buildings and libraries (see list below). In addition, an executive summary of the DEIS can be downloaded from the project website at www.paturnpike.com/i95.

All written comments about the DEIS should be signed and sent by July 2, 2001 to:
Jeffrey Davis, Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission, PA Turnpike/I-95 Interchange Project Office, 3220 Tillman Drive, Suite 215, Bensalem, PA 19020-2083.

The DEIS, which is a comprehensive summary of all the projectís studies, fully documents the design alternatives and their potential impacts on features of the environment such as wetlands, noise, and air quality, as well as homes, businesses, and historic resources. "The DEIS is the culmination of a multi-year project development process that incorporates extensive feedback from the public, elected officials, and various environmental and government agencies," said Jeffrey Davis, project manager at the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission. "We encourage everyone to review the DEIS and provide written comments. All comments will then be considered in the project's Final Environmental Impact Statement."

To coincide with the release of the DEIS, the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission, PENNDOT and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will hold a joint public hearing/open house on Tuesday, June 12, 2001 at the Harry S. Truman High School, Green Lane and Mill Creek Road in Levittown, PA. The hearing will give citizens another opportunity to provide comments by offering oral or written testimony. Those wishing to provide spoken comments in a public setting can do so in the afternoon between 2:00 pm and 5:00 pm or in the evening from 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm. Anyone interested in providing public oral testimony should pre-register for a maximum five-minute speaking time slot by calling the Project Office at 215-244-4444.

At the June 12 public hearing, Project Team representatives will also be available between 1:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. to answer questions in an open house setting. Attendees at the open house will be able to view a project video, which will provide a general overview of the entire project. In addition, large display boards will clearly illustrate the projectís alternatives and their respective impacts on the area. During these hours the public will also have the option of submitting written or oral testimony in a private setting.

The main objectives for the Pennsylvania Turnpike/I-95 Interchange Project are to connect two interstates, reduce local roadway congestion in lower Bucks County, and complete the missing link to make I-95 continuous through the Mid-Atlantic Region. Making this connection will require building a direct I-95 interchange, a new Turnpike mainline toll plaza, widening the Pennsylvania Turnpike from four to six lanes, and an additional bridge over the Delaware River.

Two design alternatives for each of the three project elements: the interchange, bridge, and toll plaza were fully evaluated by project engineers and are presented in detail in the DEIS. Based on public feedback and potential environmental impacts, the Turnpike Commission and the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation have identified the Single Loop A Interchange, Bridge South, and Modified Toll Plaza West alternatives as the Recommended Preferred Alternative for construction.

Following the close of the comment period on July 2, 2001, all substantive comments that were received will be considered. Then, the projectís Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) will be prepared in conjunction with PENNDOT and the Federal Highway Administration. The FEIS will then be available for review. After reviewing substantive comments received on the FEIS, the Federal Highway Administration issues a Record of Decision that identifies the preferred alternative approved for construction. Afterwards, the Turnpike Commission can proceed with preliminary and final design, right-of-way acquisition, and construction, subject to the availability of federal funding.


PA TURNPIKE/I-95 INTERCHANGE PROJECT:
DEIS REVIEW LOCATIONS

The project's Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) is available for public review on May 11, 2001. The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission has distributed the DEIS to the following public locations, which may be visited during their regular business hours:

Bucks County locations
PA Turnpike/I-95 Interchange Project Office, 3220 Tillman Drive, Suite 215, Bensalem, PA
Bensalem Township Municipal Building, 2400 Byberry Road, Bensalem, PA
Bristol Township Municipal Building, 2501 Bath Road, Bristol, PA
Middletown Municipal Building, 2140 Trenton Road, Levittown, PA
Bucks County Free Library, 3700 Hulmeville Road, Bensalem, PA
Bucks County Free Library, 7311 New Falls Road, Levittown, PA
Margaret Grundy Library, 680 Radcliffe Street, Bristol, PA
Bucks County Planning Commission, Neshaminy Manor Center, Doylestown, PA
Bucks County Transportation Management Agency, 1 North Wilson Avenue, Bristol, PA

New Jersey locations
Burlington Municipal Building, 851 Old York Road, Burlington, NJ
Burlington City Library, 23 West Union Street, Burlington, NJ
Burlington County Planning Commission, 1900 Briggs Road, Mount Laurel, NJ
Florence Township Public Library, 1350 Hornberger Avenue, Roebling, NJ
Florence Township Municipal Building, 711 Broad St, Florence, NJ

Philadelphia locations
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Phila. District, Wanamaker Building, 100 Penn Square East, Philadelphia, PA
City of Philadelphia Planning Commission, 1515 Market St., 17th Floor, Philadelphia, PA
Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission, Bourse Building, 21 S. 5th St., 8th Floor, Philadelphia, PA

Other locations

PA Turnpike Commission, Administration Building, Rt. 283 & Eisenhower Blvd., Highspire, PA
PA Turnpike Commission, Eastern Regional Office, 251 Flint Hill Road, King of Prussia, PA
PA Department of Transportation, District 6-0, 7000 Geerdes Blvd, King of Prussia, PA

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