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Author Topic: PA Turnpike News  (Read 904569 times)

storm2k

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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2650 on: March 27, 2021, 11:09:39 PM »

Took a ride on the Turnpike today for the first time since they went to AET. My observation is that they really need to step up their signage at the toll plazas that you don't need to stop for a ticket anymore. Got on at the Bensalem interchange, and the guy in front of me came to a complete stop expecting to take a ticket. Luckily everyone else was slowing up to go thru the toll booths, but the only signs there were small ones on the booths themselves that said "Keep Moving". They need some more signs to not stop and that all tolling is electronic until they take the booths down.
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Flyer78

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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2651 on: March 28, 2021, 07:08:22 PM »

For the first several months after the switch to AET, the VMS on the road had a repeating message about not stopping. That was not running today, but they were showing weather warning messages instead. A "pre-entry" sign on PA315 still had the AET message running.

I had a quick trip up and back to the Scranton area today, and on the NE Extension, as noted upthread, the lane mode signs have been removed.

It seems weird to me that at Mid-County, with the open-road-gantries, that they have kept all the unused booths open. It would seem at some point they would funnel people more towards either the ORT gantry or lanes closer to it.

Further north, the formerly E-ZPass only Exit 87 has had all "tagholder only signs" removed. The mainline plaza past Wilkes-Barre has also had its advanced overhead warning signs updated to read "Toll Plaza Ahead / Reduce Speed" (replacing the Pay Toll / E-Z Pass legend).

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MASTERNC

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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2652 on: March 28, 2021, 07:42:48 PM »

Took a ride on the Turnpike today for the first time since they went to AET. My observation is that they really need to step up their signage at the toll plazas that you don't need to stop for a ticket anymore. Got on at the Bensalem interchange, and the guy in front of me came to a complete stop expecting to take a ticket. Luckily everyone else was slowing up to go thru the toll booths, but the only signs there were small ones on the booths themselves that said "Keep Moving". They need some more signs to not stop and that all tolling is electronic until they take the booths down.

Maybe "Do Not Stop" signs would have been better?
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jeffandnicole

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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2653 on: March 28, 2021, 11:12:41 PM »

Took a ride on the Turnpike today for the first time since they went to AET. My observation is that they really need to step up their signage at the toll plazas that you don't need to stop for a ticket anymore. Got on at the Bensalem interchange, and the guy in front of me came to a complete stop expecting to take a ticket. Luckily everyone else was slowing up to go thru the toll booths, but the only signs there were small ones on the booths themselves that said "Keep Moving". They need some more signs to not stop and that all tolling is electronic until they take the booths down.

Maybe "Do Not Stop" signs would have been better?

As long as there's no signage saying Stop, take ticket, it's engrained in people to stop and get a ticket.  Until they remove the plazas, some people are going to look for that ticket.  They would do this in EZ Pass Only lanes too. 

Also...people don't look at signs.
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Zeffy

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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2654 on: March 29, 2021, 09:49:40 AM »

Took a ride on the Turnpike today for the first time since they went to AET. My observation is that they really need to step up their signage at the toll plazas that you don't need to stop for a ticket anymore. Got on at the Bensalem interchange, and the guy in front of me came to a complete stop expecting to take a ticket. Luckily everyone else was slowing up to go thru the toll booths, but the only signs there were small ones on the booths themselves that said "Keep Moving". They need some more signs to not stop and that all tolling is electronic until they take the booths down.

Maybe "Do Not Stop" signs would have been better?

When I was coming home one night on 476 north at the Mid County interchange, some doofus nearly caused someone in the right lane (of the toll gantry) to wreck because they thought it was a good idea to STOP AND REVERSE PAST THE GORE POINT TO GET BACK TO THE TOLLBOOTH LANES. The dude had to swerve so aggressively I wasn't sure if he did it or not without wrecking.

There are DO NOT STOP signs and KEEP MOVING signs. People lacking braincells will ignore them regardless.
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roadman65

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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2655 on: March 29, 2021, 11:10:08 AM »

Took a ride on the Turnpike today for the first time since they went to AET. My observation is that they really need to step up their signage at the toll plazas that you don't need to stop for a ticket anymore. Got on at the Bensalem interchange, and the guy in front of me came to a complete stop expecting to take a ticket. Luckily everyone else was slowing up to go thru the toll booths, but the only signs there were small ones on the booths themselves that said "Keep Moving". They need some more signs to not stop and that all tolling is electronic until they take the booths down.

Maybe "Do Not Stop" signs would have been better?

When I was coming home one night on 476 north at the Mid County interchange, some doofus nearly caused someone in the right lane (of the toll gantry) to wreck because they thought it was a good idea to STOP AND REVERSE PAST THE GORE POINT TO GET BACK TO THE TOLLBOOTH LANES. The dude had to swerve so aggressively I wasn't sure if he did it or not without wrecking.

There are DO NOT STOP signs and KEEP MOVING signs. People lacking braincells will ignore them regardless.


You should see the maneuvers people make at the Polk Central Plaza in Lakeland, FL.  They get into a manned lane not aware prepaid transponders are excepted in all lanes. So they back up and reverse direction until before the gore point, and then enter the dedicated SunPass lane.

Then some morons actually go through a SunPass only lane, continue pass the plaza, and back up into the attended lane to attempt to pay the toll they did not pay.

Then in Orlando some foreigner goes through the open road bypass lanes and stops on the shoulder, gets out of his car, climbs over the Jersey barrier, nearly loses his life to a large semi, and almost makes it to the manned toll booth and says this I got into the wrong lane by mistake. I need to pay my toll.

Then we had one man make a u turn facing the wrong way heading back to the toll plaza to attempt to pay a toll that he missed using a SunPass only lane. He even got confrontational with the Plaza Supervisor who tried to explain to him the process of going through dedicated transponder lanes.

Like Jeff and Nicole said here in another thread People dont read the signs.
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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2656 on: May 02, 2021, 07:20:54 PM »

Looks like the Turnpike is starting booth removal at Mid-County. Over the weekend, the ramp from the WB Turnpike to I-476 South has been reduced from two lanes to one (the directional signage for the toll plaza split was replaced with an "ALL LANES E-ZPass or Toll By Plate" sign). The two lanes from the NE Extension now merge into one past the I-276 ramps, and all traffic is funneled into the two existing Express E-ZPass lanes, while the cash lanes are completely closed off. The old traffic pattern where the Germantown Pike on-ramp created the third lane on I-476 has been restored.

Right now, I-476 north traffic still splits between the express lanes and the cash lanes.

Not sure if the PTC plans to add a lane through the toll gantry, but I am thinking this might create some congestion if traffic continues to pick up.
« Last Edit: May 02, 2021, 09:10:09 PM by MASTERNC »
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Flyer78

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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2657 on: May 03, 2021, 09:29:28 AM »

What I found interesting last night, all the lane control lights for the old booths were still green, which stands out much more than the temporary bollards closing off access. (not Jersey Barriers) 

At the other end of the NE Extension, a similar issues arises at Clarks Summit, where a lane is indicated open, but blocked off ahead of a single lane pattern to the extreme left past the plaza.

I guess there is no one left to "turn out the lights"
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Roadgeekteen

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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2658 on: May 04, 2021, 05:44:09 PM »

In your opinion, what is the best scenery on the Pennslyvania Turnpike?
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MASTERNC

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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2659 on: May 04, 2021, 08:43:55 PM »

Some good news here

Pennsylvania Turnpike adds nearly $200 million to capital spending as commercial traffic returns

This includes resumption of widening projects and the removal of toll plazas (starting in NE PA).  If the Legislature follows through with reducing the annual transit payments, the work will expand to interchange reconfiguration.
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SignBridge

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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2660 on: May 04, 2021, 08:44:46 PM »

I haven't driven the entire Penn. Turnpike. But I like going west from Harrisburg on the twelve-mile straight stretch seeing the mountains in the distance getting closer and closer until you go up the gradual curving incline to the first tunnel.

Also from Phila. to Harrisburg is a mostly pleasant scenic drive. 
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Angelo71

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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2661 on: May 04, 2021, 08:45:16 PM »

In your opinion, what is the best scenery on the Pennslyvania Turnpike?
New Stanton to Breezewood. It is so scenic! I love I-70 from Breezewood to MD though. I love it!
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jmacswimmer

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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2662 on: May 04, 2021, 09:02:56 PM »

In your opinion, what is the best scenery on the Pennslyvania Turnpike?

Everything from (and including) the Susquehanna River Bridge westward, and on the NE Extension everything from Lehigh Valley northward.
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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2663 on: May 04, 2021, 09:03:25 PM »

In your opinion, what is the best scenery on the Pennslyvania Turnpike?

If you want to see something cool, near the bottom of the hill east of the Allegheny Tunnel, there is a stretch of meandering roadway that allows you to see several iterations of the curves looking straight ahead.  GSV doesn't do it justice.
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Crown Victoria

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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2664 on: May 04, 2021, 11:24:16 PM »

Some good news here

Pennsylvania Turnpike adds nearly $200 million to capital spending as commercial traffic returns

This includes resumption of widening projects and the removal of toll plazas (starting in NE PA).  If the Legislature follows through with reducing the annual transit payments, the work will expand to interchange reconfiguration.

Looks like the long-awaited widening near Valley Forge will finally begin later this year: https://www.patpconstruction.com/mp324to326/

Also good to see the rate of toll increase will begin to slow down (from 6% to 5%, and eventually to 3%). Of course it would be nice to not have any toll increase at all, but the legacy of Act 44 will live on for quite a while yet.
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tylert120

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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2665 on: May 05, 2021, 05:58:44 AM »

In your opinion, what is the best scenery on the Pennslyvania Turnpike?

As you are driving on a free road that runs parallel to it.  :colorful:
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Roadgeekteen

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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2666 on: May 05, 2021, 08:03:24 AM »

In your opinion, what is the best scenery on the Pennslyvania Turnpike?

As you are driving on a free road that runs parallel to it.  :colorful:
On it, not of it.
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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2667 on: May 05, 2021, 08:24:37 AM »

In your opinion, what is the best scenery on the Pennslyvania Turnpike?

As you are driving on a free road that runs parallel to it.  :colorful:
On it, not of it.

I presume that was mainly sarcasm directed at PTC's, er, above-market-value tolls, but I will throw out that you get the same scenery on US 30 as the Turnpike passing thru the 2 water gaps between Bedford & Everett.
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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2668 on: May 05, 2021, 08:30:26 AM »

The PA Turnpike does appear to be a step up from the NJ Turnpike and the NYS Thruway scenery wise.
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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2669 on: May 05, 2021, 10:22:29 PM »

Any speculation on when and what additional project will be announced.
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jemacedo9

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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2670 on: May 06, 2021, 01:13:34 PM »

Regarding the 324-326 Valley Forge-Area widening:  does anyone know if the bridge carrying the Turnpike over US 422 and N Gulph Road is going to be fully replaced?

The piers underneath have a diagonal portion.  Before the County Line Expwy was built (at one time was unnumbered and a portion carried PA 363 briefly), Gulph Road used to travel from northeast to southwest...you can still see the old cut-off end.  Because of that pier, I believe US 422 cannot be widened to 6 lanes, even though US 422 gets wider just east (south) of there, and they just completed the widening of the bridge over the Schuylill River.  That wider river bridge can handle 8 lanes (6+2).  So it would be nice to at least reconfigure those piers and hopefully enable the US 422 widening.
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MASTERNC

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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2671 on: May 06, 2021, 02:32:35 PM »

Regarding the 324-326 Valley Forge-Area widening:  does anyone know if the bridge carrying the Turnpike over US 422 and N Gulph Road is going to be fully replaced?

The piers underneath have a diagonal portion.  Before the County Line Expwy was built (at one time was unnumbered and a portion carried PA 363 briefly), Gulph Road used to travel from northeast to southwest...you can still see the old cut-off end.  Because of that pier, I believe US 422 cannot be widened to 6 lanes, even though US 422 gets wider just east (south) of there, and they just completed the widening of the bridge over the Schuylill River.  That wider river bridge can handle 8 lanes (6+2).  So it would be nice to at least reconfigure those piers and hopefully enable the US 422 widening.

It would be nice but that bridge also doesn't appear that old, so it might be wishful thinking.
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Roadsguy

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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2672 on: May 06, 2021, 05:39:43 PM »

Regarding the 324-326 Valley Forge-Area widening:  does anyone know if the bridge carrying the Turnpike over US 422 and N Gulph Road is going to be fully replaced?

The piers underneath have a diagonal portion.  Before the County Line Expwy was built (at one time was unnumbered and a portion carried PA 363 briefly), Gulph Road used to travel from northeast to southwest...you can still see the old cut-off end.  Because of that pier, I believe US 422 cannot be widened to 6 lanes, even though US 422 gets wider just east (south) of there, and they just completed the widening of the bridge over the Schuylill River.  That wider river bridge can handle 8 lanes (6+2).  So it would be nice to at least reconfigure those piers and hopefully enable the US 422 widening.

Yes, it will be replaced, and this will allow PennDOT to widen 422 later.

It would be nice but that bridge also doesn't appear that old, so it might be wishful thinking.

It's still the original bridge; it was just widened in the 1990s to have full outside shoulders and an eastbound exit lane. The inside portion is still the original structure from the early 1950s, just redecked when they widened it. The reason for the diagonal pier is that the bridge predates the US 422 expressway, and before that was built, there was a four-way intersection between Gulph Road and the original County Line Road underneath it. This 1950 imagery of the bridge under construction clearly shows this.
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MASTERNC

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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2673 on: May 06, 2021, 11:05:53 PM »

Regarding the 324-326 Valley Forge-Area widening:  does anyone know if the bridge carrying the Turnpike over US 422 and N Gulph Road is going to be fully replaced?

The piers underneath have a diagonal portion.  Before the County Line Expwy was built (at one time was unnumbered and a portion carried PA 363 briefly), Gulph Road used to travel from northeast to southwest...you can still see the old cut-off end.  Because of that pier, I believe US 422 cannot be widened to 6 lanes, even though US 422 gets wider just east (south) of there, and they just completed the widening of the bridge over the Schuylill River.  That wider river bridge can handle 8 lanes (6+2).  So it would be nice to at least reconfigure those piers and hopefully enable the US 422 widening.

Yes, it will be replaced, and this will allow PennDOT to widen 422 later.

It would be nice but that bridge also doesn't appear that old, so it might be wishful thinking.

It's still the original bridge; it was just widened in the 1990s to have full outside shoulders and an eastbound exit lane. The inside portion is still the original structure from the early 1950s, just redecked when they widened it. The reason for the diagonal pier is that the bridge predates the US 422 expressway, and before that was built, there was a four-way intersection between Gulph Road and the original County Line Road underneath it. This 1950 imagery of the bridge under construction clearly shows this.

Yep, now I see it. Its buried in the construction overview

https://www.patpconstruction.com/mp324to326/bridge.aspx
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Bitmapped

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Re: PA Turnpike News
« Reply #2674 on: May 11, 2021, 09:40:48 PM »

PTC has started installing toll-by-plate signage on the Mon-Fayette Expressway. I drove on the part south of Uniontown this afternoon. Coming in from West Virginia, there is a large sign announcing that tolling is by E-ZPass or bill later with plate. Signage before the mainline plaza now has E-ZPass and toll-by-plate rates. Overhead signage for the ramp toll plazas was changed, replacing the old "STOP PAY TOLL" signage with one indicating E-ZPass or toll-by-plate. It looks like signage for the mainline plaza will be changed soon.

One minor thing I noticed - this part of the Mon-Fayette had a complete sign replacement around 2018 using FHWA alphabet. The new signs are using Clearview.
« Last Edit: May 12, 2021, 10:27:19 AM by Bitmapped »
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