WEST CHESTER (May 15) – State Senator Andy Dinniman again requested that PennDOT consider expanding work hours to accelerate construction of the Route 23 (Valley Forge Road) Bridge

Dinniman wrote to Christine Reilly, Acting PennDOT District 6-0 Executive, on May 4 requesting that the department expedite work on the project and assist with traffic congestion issues related to the detour.

He said today he was compelled to write again to Reilly since the department has not responded to his call to speed up work on the project.cone-164333_1280

“I am rewriting PennDOT because I still have not received an answer to my question about the potential of expanding work hours on the bridge in order to get it done ahead of schedule,” Dinniman said. “The closure of this vital thoroughfare has been a major problem to many of my constituents. Every effort, including expanding work hours, should be made to get this bridge completed as soon as possible. And if that is not possible, we deserve to know why.”

Crews are currently in the process of replacing the 48-year-old bridge, which spans the Pickering Creek, and is traveled by almost 20,000 motorists a day. Construction on the $1.7 million project began on April 20 and is not scheduled to be completed until late this year.

As a result of Dinniman’s involvement, traffic engineers recently visited the site to adjust the timing of traffic signals at key intersections to alleviate congestion issues. In addition, PennDOT agreed to provide $30,000 for police coverage associated with the detour.

“I appreciate PennDOT’s prompt response on those fronts, but I am still waiting for a response to my third and most important question – what can we do to get it done sooner,” Dinniman said. “I strongly encourage the department to consider any and all options to move this project along.”

Dinniman said the bridge’s closure has been a serious issue for motorists, businesses and residents of the Phoenixville area.

In his latest letter to Christine Reilly, Acting PennDOT District 6-0 Executive, Dinniman again asked the department to consider extending work hours to accelerate the project’s completion.

“Due to the importance of this roadway, many of my constituents have expressed serious concerns that construction crews have not been authorized to work whenever the weather permits,” he wrote. “While I realize that funding constraints are always a realistic concern, the impact that traffic congestion has had on regional interests had demanded my attention.”

In addition, Dinniman raised concerns that utility work on Route 23 in Upper Providence Township has received permit approval from PennDOT that will begin next week.

“While I understand that emergency situations occasionally mandate immediate action, I have deep concerns regarding the impact that this work will have on an already stressed regional network,” he wrote.

 

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