SCHWEIKER URGES TURNPIKE TO
COMPLETE FINDLAY CONNECTOR
- Governor Mark Schweiker today urged the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission
to move forward with construction of the six-mile, $204 million Findlay
Connector extending south from the Pa. Route 60 Expressway at Pittsburgh
International Airport to U.S. Route 22 in Robinson Township, Washington
in Findlay Township, Allegheny County at the future site of one of two
interior interchanges, Gov. Schweiker said he is recommending that the
Turnpike Commission earmark the $175 million necessary to complete the
Commission Executive Director John T. Durbin said commissioners would move
quickly to advance the project to construction.
now, the Turnpike Commission’s funding commitment to the Findlay Connector
($29 million) was sufficient to advance the project through final design
municipal, county, state and federal officials gathered at the junction of
Ridge Road and Bald Knob Road, just north of the Washington County line, for
the governor’s announcement. Other speakers were Allegheny County Chief
Executive Jim Roddey and State Senators J. Barry Stout, Tim Murphy and Jack
Commission’s goal is to open the limited-access toll road in 2005. The
first of three roadway construction contracts is expected to be awarded in
First Quarter 2003, and the other two by next summer. Right-of-way
acquisition and the relocation of affected utilities must precede
primary funding source for the Mon/Fayette Expressway and Southern Beltway
systems are Turnpike Commission bonds backed by two revenue streams
established by the Pennsylvania General Assembly. The most recent bond
issue, with debt to be paid out of the $28 million annually that the
Turnpike receives from vehicle registration fees, was conducted in July
to south, interchanges on the Findlay Connector will be built at the main
entrance to Pittsburgh International Airport on Route 60; U.S. Route 30
southeast of Clinton; Bald Knob, Ridge and Burgettstown Roads, and at Route
22 between Route 22’s existing Pa. Route 980 (to the east) and Bavington
(to the west) interchanges.
access in and out of Pittsburgh International Airport will be provided at
the north end of the project. The project also will result in the
construction of two “missing” ramps at Route 60’s interchange with
Clinton Road. Route 30 will be widened at its interchange with the Findlay
Connector to include a turning lane.
time to the airport will be reduced substantially for traffic originating
near the stretch of Route 22 in Washington County and for traffic coming
from the west, including the Weirton, W.Va. and Steubenville, Ohio areas.
mined areas and landfills are the predominant features along the alignment
for the Findlay Connector. Approximately 75 percent of the area studied
during the analysis of prospective alignments has been mined.
Findlay Connector is one of three independent projects under development by
the Turnpike Commission that would interconnect to form a 30-mile
Southern Beltway south and east from Pittsburgh International Airport to the
Mon/Fayette Expressway in the mid-Mon Valley.
of the two other Southern Beltway projects – Route 22-to-Interstate 79 and
I-79 to the Mon/Fayette Expressway – is approximately 12 miles
long. Both are in preliminary engineering/environmental study phases.