Major Turnpike project set for Northeastern Extension

Times Leader Staff | February 6th, 2018 12:01 pm

A seven mile stretch of the Turnpike will be reconstructed, widened in Montgomery County.

The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission announced Tuesday it will begin construction for the total reconstruction and widening of the Northeastern Extension (Interstate-476) between Lansdale, Exit 31, and Quakertown, Exit 44, in Montgomery County.

Pending weather, work will start this month including tree and shrub removal along the turnpike’s right-of-way. During construction, the contractor will install temporary concrete barrier, advanced-warning signs and traffic-control devices with reduced speeds of 55 miles per hour.

Other highway components to be replaced include concrete barriers, guide rail and right-of-way fencing. Construction will include building sound barriers, retention walls for support of excavation, storm-water management basins and drainage systems.

The contractor will also replace four mainline bridges that carry turnpike traffic over local roads and creeks. These structures will be removed and replaced in stages as construction of the turnpike is widened throughout this project between mileposts A31.3 and A38.1.

“Total roadway reconstruction is a massive undertaking that involves removing the old four-lane roadway and sub-base up and completely replacing it with a brand new, six-lane roadway,” said PA Turnpike Chief Engineer Brad Heigel. “Once reconstruction and widening along the Northeastern Extension is completed, it will improve safety and enhance mobility for our customers who travel this stretch of interstate.”

The new six-lane highway will also feature full, 12-foot shoulders to the left and right of the travel lanes.

This project is expected to be completed by the end 2020, with the opening of north and southbound traffic to three lanes in each direction. Miscellaneous roadway work may continue through 2021.

Richard E. Pierson Construction Co. Inc. of Pilesgrove, N.J., was awarded the $225 million contract by the PA Turnpike last November. The project area stretches from milepost A31.3 (Fretz Road) to A38.1 (Clump Road). Hill International of Philadelphia will be providing construction-management services on the project, which crosses through Lower Salford, Franconia and Salford townships.

The section of I-476 originally opened to traffic in 1957; today it carries 51,000 vehicles a day. For more information and updates about this project, visit patpconstruction.com/mpA31toA38/.

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Times Leader Staff


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