News Release

CONTACT: Renee Vid Colborn
Phone: 717-645-3502
August 28, 2015

Pa. Turnpike Celebrates Final Service Plaza Makeover with Valley Forge Ribbon Cutting
All 17 Turnpike service plazas have been renovated under a Public-Private Partnership.

WAYNE, PA (08/28/2015) — The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission (PTC) announced that another service plaza has been renovated and reopened for business. A ribbon-cutting event in Chester County today not only commemorated the reopening of the Valley Forge Service Plaza, it also marked the completion of the last of 17 Turnpike rest stops to be modernized under a public-private partnership begun nearly a decade ago.

The plaza overhauls were made possible by a 30-year, public-private redevelopment initiative launched in 2006 when the Turnpike signed agreements with Bethesda, Md.-based HMSHost Corp. and Sunoco Inc. of Philadelphia. Under the contracts, HMSHost Corp. committed $100 million to rebuild 17 plazas, and Sunoco invested $70 million to redevelop the service stations and convenience stores.

“This public-private partnership has not only benefited our customers by providing updated, expanded facilities with broader food and beverage options, it also has allowed us to concentrate on our core mission: making a smoother, safer Turnpike for our travelers,” said PTC Chief Operating Officer Craig Shuey.

Shuey said that the money HMS Host and Sunoco invested to improve the service plazas has enabled the PTC to maximize the level of capital investment to improve the aging toll-road system, the original section of which will turn 75 years old on Oct. 1.

“We are in the midst of a major capital plan to completely rebuild and widen the Turnpike from four to six lanes, investing more than $600 million a year in road and bridge improvements,” Shuey said. “Today, we have more than $1.7 billion worth of active construction projects under way across our 550-mile system.”

The Valley Forge Service Plaza — which had closed for renovations in January — sits at milepost 324.6 in Tredyffrin Township and is accessible to eastbound travelers. The new plaza features an expanded Sunoco A-Plus convenience store with ready-made and made-to-order food options via touchscreen ordering. It features indoor and outdoor seating as well as a Starbucks drive-through window — a first for the Pennsylvania Turnpike and for any other toll highway in the United States.                                                                                                   

“It is rewarding to stand here today to celebrate the culmination of this journey and to see our customers enjoying these wonderful facilities,” Shuey said. “And it bears mentioning that this facility is ready in time for the anticipated onslaught of visitors coming to Philadelphia next month to catch a glimpse of Pope Francis.”

The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission operates and maintains 552 miles of toll roads in the state. It oversees 68 fare-collection facilities, 17 service plazas and 27 maintenance facilities. With more than 2,000 employees, it generates $932.3 million in annual toll revenue (fiscal 2015) from 192.3 million vehicles a year. Known as “America’s First Superhighway,” it opened Oct. 1, 1940. To learn more, visit www.paturnpike.com.

Customers can download a free Service Plaza reference booklet from the Turnpike website at https://www.paturnpike.com/travel/service_plazas.aspx

 

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