PHIA News Digest – Vol. 7, No. 28

July 11, 2022

CSVT northern section fully open to traffic

PennDOT announced all lanes are now fully open to traffic. This includes new southbound lanes between the new Ridge Road interchange in Northumberland County and existing Route 15 in Union County, as well as the remaining portion of the new roadway for southbound traffic entering from existing Route 147 at the northern end of the project.

Pa.’s 2022-23 budget package spends, saves money in record ways

It reduces the amount of Motor License Fund dollars used to support the state police to $500 million, which frees up $175 million annually for road and bridge projects.

PA Senate passes bill on bridge tolling

The PA Senate passed Senate Bill 382 on July 7, led by Senate Transportation Committee Chairman Sen. Wayne Langerholc, Jr. (R), which will stop PennDOT from imposing new tolls on existing bridges throughout the Commonwealth.



PHIA News Digest – Vol. 7, No. 27

July 5, 2022

Buttigieg launches $1B pilot to build racial equity in roads

Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg on Thursday launched a $1 billion first-of-its-kind pilot program aimed at helping reconnect cities and neighborhoods racially segregated or divided by road projects, pledging wide-ranging help to dozens of communities despite the program’s limited dollars.

Self-driving vehicle legislation advances in Harrisburg

House Bill 2398 recently passed through the Pennsylvania House of Representatives. It heads to the Senate for consideration next.

Philadelphia’s suburbs embrace the electric vehicle revolution

A growing number of municipalities across the suburbs of Philadelphia are transitioning their gas-powered municipal vehicle fleets and investing in the infrastructure to support EVs.

Revenue Department releases fiscal year 2021-22 collections

In addition to the General Fund collections, the Motor License Fund received $253.2 million for the month, $7.1 million above estimate. Fiscal year-to-date collections for the fund – which include the commonly known gas and diesel taxes, as well as other license, fine and fee revenues – total $2.9 billion, which is $37.4 million, or 1.3 percent, above estimate.

Pa. transportation officials rally around app to alert of vehicle’s temperature

This app, when connected to specific car seats, can alert parents of the temperature in the car, when its buckle has come undone, and the location of the seat itself.

Court blocks PennDOT’s plan to toll 9 state bridges to pay for repairs

A plan to add tolls to bridges on nine major Pennsylvania interstates hit the brakes Thursday when a state court said PennDOT and state officials did not properly follow the law to establish the controversial tolling plan.

Ordering from Amazon or taking a Lyft ride? You could be kicking in money for roads, transit and EVs.

A sea change in transportation funding is coming July 1, when several new fees approved by Colorado lawmakers more than a year ago will take effect. They will target more users of the state’s roads and highways, along with their customers, to chip in for major road and bridge projects — along with initiatives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from tailpipes across the fast-growing state.

P. Joseph Grata

Joseph Grata, of Belle Vernon, Washington Township, a nationally recognized Pittsburgh-based transportation reporter, Belle Vernon Area School Board member and community leader, died of cancer on Monday, June 27, 2022, at his home in Lynnwood, Washington Township. He was 78.



PHIA News Digest – Vol. 7, No. 26

June 27, 2022

Thousands walk, bike across CSVT portion, bridge

PennDOT gave people the opportunity to be the first to use the new northern portion and river bridge of the Central Susquehanna Transportation project Saturday

$121M project set to begin at Route 51 interchange in Rostraver

The reconstruction of the Interstate 70 and Route 51 interchange in Rostraver has the distinction of being the highest-dollar-value project ever bid in Penn­DOT’s District 12.

Legislation proposed In Pa. for gas-tax holiday

It’s taken her more than four months, but Sen. Lisa Boscola, D-Lehigh/Northampton, has filed legislation to create a two-month sales gas tax holiday in Pennsylvania.

PennDOT, Maryland considering six alignments for final leg of Route 219

The public will get a chance to weigh in Thursday on six possible routes for the final four-lane leg of Route 219 between Ebensburg and Maryland. PennDOT officials are having two meetings about the project in the coming week.

PennDOT preparing for next phase of Mon-Fayette Expressway project

PennDOT is getting ready to begin the next part of the Mon-Fayette Expressway project. The southern part of the project will stretch eight miles from Jefferson Hills to Duquesne and will cost around $800 million.



PHIA News Digest — Vol. 7, No. 25

June 20, 2022

PennDOT warns drivers to slow down during construction season

Work zones can be dangerous, not only for drivers, but especially the workers. State officials say since 1970 PennDOT has lost 90 workers in the line of duty.

Pa. plans electric charging stations for interstates

PennDOT will submit a plan to the U.S. Department of Transportation in August about how the agency will build Pennsylvania’s share of a nationwide network of electric vehicle charging stations. But first, PennDOT wants to hear from Pennsylvanians about how they think the agency should prioritize spending $171.5 million.

Autonomous vehicle bill advances in Pa.

One bill moving through the Pennsylvania House is touted to modernize the state’s vehicle code to allow for the driverless testing and deployment of highly autonomous vehicles.

Opponents have valid concerns on bridge-tolling plan

PennDOT’s P3 initiative is intended as an alternative funding plan to address a backlog of bridges in need of repairs and replacement. The department says Pennsylvania presently has $15 billion in infrastructure needs and a shortfall exceeding $8 billion to address them.

Pennsylvanians urged to review transit options

Officials from PennDOT and Human Services on Monday urged Pennsylvanians to use Find My Ride to learn about public transit options and apply for transportation assistance programs.

Pa. has billions to spend as budget season begins

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf and state lawmakers are launching into their busiest stretch: the horse-trading and budget-making weeks of June that are vastly different this year than any other in memory, with billions of extra dollars to spread around.



PHIA News Digest – Vol. 7, No. 24

June 13, 2022

It’s going to be hard finding workers to build infrastructure

The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law will invest more than a half trillion dollars in American infrastructure over five years. It’s been estimated that this could create more than 3 million jobs in the construction workforce, bringing hundreds of thousands of new job opportunities every year.

PennDOT to close license, photo centers for Juneteenth

PennDOT has announced that all driver’s license and photo centers, including its Harrisburg full-service center, will be closed Saturday, June 18, through Monday, June 20, for Juneteenth National Freedom Day.

Allowing local police to use radar for speed enforcement has never been closer to becoming law

With that goal in reach that would put Pennsylvania in the company of the 49 other states that already allow this, a coalition of law enforcement and municipal organizations is making a full-court press to bring it to fruition.

Impact of potential suspension of Pa. gas tax

Democratic state Rep. Tony DeLuca, of Allegheny County, proposed legislation in March to suspend the state’s gas tax until the end of this year. The bill is currently sitting before the House Transportation Committee.

GOP lawmakers eviscerate PennDOT’s bridge tolling plan

The Commonwealth Court may have temporarily halted the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation’s plan to toll nine bridges across the state, but a collection of lawmakers, activists and local government officials rallied at the state Capitol Wednesday to call on Gov. Tom Wolf’s administration to pull the plug on the initiative once and for all.

Pa. House panel takes up electric vehicle charging infrastructure

Someday, charging stations for electric vehicles will be as common as roadside gas stations on America’s highways and byways. At least that’s how state Rep. Mary Jo Daley, D-Montgomery, envisions a clean and green future for motorists across the commonwealth and nationwide.

Pa. pedestrian deaths up 20%; bigger cars, road design at issue

Pedestrian deaths have crept upward for more than a decade nationally, and Pennsylvania has seen a 21% rise since 2019.

Luzerne Co. drivers switching to scooters to save money

With current gas prices, many are turning to two wheels instead of four.

New payment option for Turnpike drivers

Motorists on the Pennsylvania Turnpike will soon have another option to pay tolls at a number of retail locations. The Turnpike Commission recently announced a partnership with KUBRA Cash Payment Network so that customers can use cash to pay Toll By Plate invoices or add funds to E-ZPass accounts.