|Work Continues on Pa. Turnpike near Bensalem Interchange for I-95 Link
Construction activity expected to impact Turnpike traffic next week between exits 351-358.
|The Pennsylvania Turnpike reports that construction is getting under way for the project to widen three miles of Interstate 276 where a new mainline toll plaza is being built at milepost 352.6 east of the Bensalem Interchange (Exit #351) in Bucks County. The work is part of the first of two projects to relocate tolling facilities before completing the connection between the Turnpike and Interstate 95.
Work on the mainline toll plaza began in July with little impact to motorists on I-276 between the Bensalem Exit (#351) and the Delaware River Bridge (#359). For several months, the contractor has been clearing trees and shrubs and installing erosion and sedimentation controls between the new Richlieu Road bridge and the Trevose maintenance facility at Galloway Road.
Nearly three miles of I-276 will be widened to accommodate the construction of four Express E-ZPass lanes, three conventional (ticket) tolling lanes for westbound traffic and five conventional (cash) tolling lanes for eastbound traffic.
Starting the week of Sept. 30, workers will begin installing temporary concrete barrier closing the shoulder in both directions between milepost 351.4-354.1. During this time, the speed limit will be reduced to 55 mph. Additionally, some work will require off-peak single-lane patterns with reduced speeds of 40 mph.
Additional work in the $59.2 million tolling-facilities contract includes: installation of guiderail, drainage inlets and pipes, stormwater management basins, sound barriers, retaining walls, box culverts, right-of-way fencing, and a prefabricated utility building at the Delaware River Bridge.
The new mainline toll plaza and the open-road tolling facility are scheduled to be operational by fall 2015.
The demolition of the existing Delaware Valley Interchange (Exit #358) and the Delaware River Bridge toll plaza (Exit #359) will be completed by summer 2016.
Projects nearing completion as part of Stage 1 for the I-276/I-95 Interchange project are the installation of an Advance Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) and the replacement of two overhead bridges. The 15-month detour to replace the bridge that carries Richlieu Road over the Turnpike at milepost 352.3 was lifted, and the new bridge opened Aug. 30. The new Ford Road bridge that crosses I-95 in Bristol Township will open to traffic Sept. 27. The ITS equipment (eight Dynamic Message Signs and two Closed Circuit Television Systems) has been installed and is in the testing phase.
Additional construction activities and project schedules can be viewed on the I-95 project website at www.paturnpikei95.com.
Motorists can get Turnpike traffic alerts and detour information by calling 866-976-TRIP (8747) or visiting the live Travel Conditions Map online at www.paturnpike.com/webmap. The Turnpike’s smartphone app, Trip Talk, streams audio advisories to iPhone and Droid users so they can keep their hands on the wheel and eyes on the road. To download the free app, visit www.paturnpike.com/triptalk. For emergencies, dial *11 on your mobile phone.