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New report cites poor condition of PA’s rural roads and bridges

Pennsylvania has the fifth-highest number of deteriorating rural bridges in the country, according to a new study by a national transportation research organization. The report, produced by a Washington-based nonprofit organization… [read more]

New report cites poor condition of PA’s rural roads and bridges New report cites poor condition of PA’s rural roads and bridges

Across Pa., highway projects set for restart

After suspending construction for six weeks due to COVID-19, contractors are preparing to restart bridge and highway projects across Pennsylvania as soon as May 1. As construction resumes, there has been much discussion regarding… [read more]

Across Pa., highway projects set for restart Across Pa., highway projects set for restart

Coronavirus is the newest threat to highway funding

Despite the troubles that swirl around us, there was a glimmer of positivity this week as the American Road & Transportation Builders Association released its annual report on the condition of the nation’s bridges. In… [read more]

Coronavirus is the newest threat to highway funding Coronavirus is the newest threat to highway funding

Encouraging news from Harrisburg and Washington

PennDOT announced this week that 61 emergency and critical highway and bridge projects will resume statewide. While the entire highway and bridge construction program was paused as the Commonwealth addressed the COVID-19 response,… [read more]

Encouraging news from Harrisburg and Washington Encouraging news from Harrisburg and Washington

Pandemic causes projects and activities to grind to a halt

The worsening coronavirus disease pandemic has led to a number of sudden event postponements and cancellations, and many others are up in the air as we try to get a handle on combatting the spread of the virus. The House Transportation… [read more]

Pandemic causes projects and activities to grind to a halt Pandemic causes projects and activities to grind to a halt

NEWS & UPDATES

News

Transportation advocates searching for truck-parking solutions

May 28, 2020 -- Leave a Comment

COVID-19 illuminated an already-worsening dilemma when the Turnpike Commission and PennDOT closed down Pennsylvania’s rest areas, attempting to control the spreading virus. The dilemma? Parking facilities for trucks.

While many members of the motoring public simply stopped driving and sheltered in place, the nation’s freight haulers still had work to do – especially when those hunkering down at home began ordering everything from hand sanitizer to dog food from on-line purveyors. Pennsylvania scrambled to restore truck parking areas, and most if not all of the Commonwealth’s rest stops are up and running again.

It was already becoming an issue as the market for online purchases is growing rapidly. The American Transportation Research Institute’s most recent Top Industry Issues report identified truck parking as fifth among the trucking industry’s top concerns. Read more

PHIA NEWS DIGEST

PHIA News Digest – Vol. 5, No. 21

May 26, 2020 -- Leave a Comment

Speeds of 100 mph or more, not congestion, are the concern for Memorial Day weekend traffic

Transportation officials are not worried about too many cars on the roads for the holiday weekend, but how fast drivers are going, and have been traveling, during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Government groups launch truck parking survey

Truck parking challenges in the Northeast amid the coronavirus pandemic — due in part to shipment type or route changes — are being surveyed by a group of 13 transportation departments and metropolitan planning organizations.

PA Turnpike facing financial burden amid COVID-19 travel restrictions

As the COVID-19 pandemic affects almost every type of business, the Pennsylvania Turnpike is not being spared. Turnpike officials said they have been hit financially just like everyone else, and there’s no telling how they will bounce back.

PennDOT filling pent-up demand at driver’s license centers

Although she turned 16 in April, the closure of non-essential businesses due to COVID-19 meant that Laina Whipkey was barred from going to a PennDOT driver’s license center to test for her driver’s permit.

 

PHIA NEWS DIGEST

PHIA News Digest – Vol. 5, No. 20

May 18, 2020 -- Comments Off on PHIA News Digest – Vol. 5, No. 20

Report: Highway fatalities reach new low in 2019, PennDOT officials say

PennDOT officials announced Thursday that the state total of highway fatalities reached an all time low in 2019, dropping to 1,059 total fatalities.

Representatives urging study on impact of electric cars

State Reps. Liz Hanbidge (D-Montgomery) and Chris Rabb (D-Philadelphia) are urging a study of the impact of electric vehicles in Pennsylvania.

Pandemic put $1 billion hole in Pennsylvania’s transportation budget

PennDOT is delaying new construction and downgrading resurfacing to patching and sealing as state highway workers return to work after a seven-week coronavirus pandemic shutdown.

PennDOT to use existing photos for drivers license, identification card renewals

In an effort to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, PennDOT says it will use existing photos on file for customers renewing their driver’s license and identification cards.

PennDOT extends deadlines for vehicle registrations, inspections

PennDOT announced Tuesday that expiration dates for vehicle registrations and safety and emission inspections will be extended for Pennsylvania residents in response to statewide COVID-19 mitigation efforts, according to a press release.

 

PHIA NEWS DIGEST

PHIA News Digest – Vol. 5, No. 19

May 11, 2020 -- Comments Off on PHIA News Digest – Vol. 5, No. 19

Feds OK I-83 widening project

The Federal Highway Administration has signed off on an Interstate 83 widening project that could displace nearly 100 York County homeowners and businesses. The project, covering roughly 5 miles of the I-83 corridor from Exit 19 to Exit 22 — Market Street to North George Street — received FHA approval April 20 based on an environmental and engineering assessment conducted in August.

With April revenue down 30 percent, PennDOT counting on federal aid

The fate of PennDOT’s operations lies in whether the department receives a chunk of federal funding from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act.

PennDOT makes changes for drivers during pandemic

PennDOT advises drivers to not worry about renewing licenses if they have expired during the stay at home order. Any licenses or ID’s that have expired from March 16th to May 31st will be valid until June 30.

Bridges connecting Pa., New Jersey to collect cash again

Drivers making the trip over the Delaware River between New Jersey and Pennsylvania will soon be able to use cash again on four bridges. Starting Monday, May 11, at 6 a.m. the Delaware River Port Authority will begin taking cash payments again for tolls on the Ben Franklin, Betsy Ross, Commodore Barry and Walt Whitman bridges, connecting South Jersey with Philadelphia and Delaware County, the DRPA announced Wednesday.

PennDOT says $800M in federal aid needed to keep non-critical projects rolling

Facing a drop in gas tax revenue from fewer motorists driving at a time when the Pennsylvania Turnpike won’t turn over more than $100 million due in July, PennDOT might delay noncritical bridge and highway projects if the state does not get $700 million to $800 million in covid-19 federal aid this summer, agency officials said Tuesday.

U.S. Transportation Secretary says CARES Act has ‘done a great deal’ for state

In an interview seen only on KDKA, U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao was asked if her Department was doing enough to help this region. Chao insists the CARES Act is helping local agencies.

PennDOT implementing COVID-19 guidelines as projects reopen

When work resumes on the Upper Bridge section of the Central Susquehanna Valley Thruway on Monday, all contract workers will follow COVID-19 safety guidelines as required by a safety plan submitted by the contractor, and approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation.

 

PHIA NEWS DIGEST

PHIA News Digest – Vol. 5, No. 18

May 5, 2020 -- Comments Off on PHIA News Digest – Vol. 5, No. 18

Construction projects across Pennsylvania get ready to roll

After sitting idle for approximately six weeks, nonessential construction sites across Pennsylvania are gearing up to resume work on May 1. In doing so, project teams must adhere to new COVID-19 safety regulations released by Gov. Tom Wolf (D) on April 24. Wolf became one of the first governors in the country to shut down all but essential projects on March 19.

PennDOT to resume safety project near I-80 Bellefonte Interchange

While it will likely be at least five years before the new I-80/I-99 high-speed interchange is completed, PennDOT is continuing work to enhance safety near the I-80 Bellefonte exit.

Potters Mills work continues in May

Work will continue off the roadway, and drivers should be alert and drive cautiously, as numerous construction vehicles will enter and exit U.S. 322 through the Potters Mills area. Flaggers in the roadway may be aiding construction vehicle movement. Motorists are not permitted to follow construction equipment into the work area.

Southern Beltway project to resume in Mt. Pleasant Township

Construction on the Southern Beltway will continue beginning Tuesday with traffic restrictions being set into place in Mt. Pleasant Township, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation.

CSVT work to continue next week

Work will begin Monday and will include excavation and embankment operations, planting trees and shrubs, and building temporary access roads to facilitate the paving operations. Work on the CSVT River Bridge will begin a week later, on May 11. The contractor will continue preparatory work for the construction of the bridge deck.

Pa. turnpike traffic reduction could cost SEPTA $178M

SEPTA is hemorrhaging money and riders thanks to the coronavirus pandemic — and now, it also faces an imminent shortfall in state transit funding that could delay critical infrastructure projects like station renovations or new vehicle purchases.

Pa. banned license plates: The 2,000+ phrases PennDOT won’t allow you to use

Over the years, PennDOT has compiled a list of messages it will not allow on license plates, whether by some random assembly or by a mischievous driver willing to pay for a vanity plate. The list has a mind-boggling 2,330 entries.

PA Turnpike sees 46% traffic reduction during pandemic

The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission is seeing a revenue loss when it comes to tolls across the state. “We’ve seen a 35% decrease in revenue and a 46% decrease in traffic volumes,” Turnpike Commission spokesperson Carl DeFebo said.

Gas tax revenue drying up

According to AAA Mid-Atlantic, the demand for gasoline has dropped as much as 50%, inventories have risen to a record high and the price of gas continues to plunge at the pump.