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Author Topic: SW Pennsylvania  (Read 83154 times)

rickmastfan67

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SW Pennsylvania
« on: November 30, 2011, 10:27:15 PM »

I thought that we should have a specific thread in this section for things in SW Pennsylvania that don't need their own thread.

----------

Just was up in Zelienople on Friday and the brand new ramps at I-79 Exit #88 look very close to be ready to be opened.  Everything was painted.  Only things they need to finish on Little Creek Road is to put up the concrete divider on the new bridge (they were installing the rebar for it when I drove by), and install the traffic lights at the ramp intersections.  As for on I-79, they still need to install the new signs for the ramp going NB (SB already existed, so no new signage was needed for that direction).  They installed a new overhead gantry for Exit #87 (PA-68) ramp to replace the sign that was on the side of the road (which was still up as of last Friday).  On that gantry, they also have a new sign for Exit #88, but it was covered.  I got a picture of it, and I'll post it later once I get it off my camera and crop it.

Project website: http://www.dot.state.pa.us/penndot/districts/d10const.nsf/FS79Ramp?OpenFrameSet

rickmastfan67

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Re: SW Pennsylvania
« Reply #1 on: December 16, 2011, 08:33:18 PM »

Another update on the I-79 Exit #88 project.

Just traveled the area again today and all the traffic lights have been installed for both sets of ramps, plus the Little Creek Road/Seneca School Road intersection.  The ramp traffic lights are currently set on flashing mode, while the one @ Little Creek Road/Seneca School Road intersection has been turned on and is activated.  The concrete divider is also inplace on the bridge over I-79 and traffic is using both sides of the bridge finally.  Everything for the interchange seems to be ready to go for it to be opened fully (currently, only the SB off-ramp is open since it was one of the two original ramps; other was the NB on-ramp).

The only thing I could think that could be holding up the full opening of the interchange could be some missing signage for the ramp South of Exit #87.  There are some foundations for signs, but no polls/signage.  There are at least two sets of them.  If that's what's holding up PennDOT from opening the interchange, it's stupid.  They have at least the 1 mile sign and signage at the interchange already up and covered, that should be enough for now to open it up as everything else is completed.

Hopefully they will have the interchange fully opened up before the end of the year.
« Last Edit: December 16, 2011, 08:37:47 PM by rickmastfan67 »
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rickmastfan67

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Re: SW Pennsylvania
« Reply #2 on: December 21, 2011, 06:50:50 AM »

Another update on the I-79 Exit #88 project.

<snip>

Hopefully they will have the interchange fully opened up before the end of the year.

Well, it looks like the interchange is now open.  According to this article, the new ramps were opened yesterday. :)  Can't wait to be able to use them the next time I'm up that way, and to get pictures of the signs uncovered, lol. :D

EDIT: And here's the PennDOT release on the opening of the interchange ramps which was posted yesterday (20th).  So, it seems the ramps are opening this afternoon. :)
« Last Edit: December 21, 2011, 07:00:03 AM by rickmastfan67 »
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Re: SW Pennsylvania
« Reply #3 on: December 22, 2011, 04:05:41 PM »

When they built I-79 through that area, they never thought that the area would grow.  Boy they where wrong and it has cost them a lot of money to upgrade the ramps from partial ramps to a full interchange.  But they have upgraded what they can. 
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rickmastfan67

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Re: SW Pennsylvania
« Reply #4 on: December 22, 2011, 09:08:35 PM »

When they built I-79 through that area, they never thought that the area would grow.  Boy they where wrong and it has cost them a lot of money to upgrade the ramps from partial ramps to a full interchange.  But they have upgraded what they can. 

Yeah, I hear ya.  Too bad they can't make the PA-68 interchange a full one. :(

You know, PennDOT should post a US-19 Truck route there now. ;)  Since Exit #88 is now a full interchange, a truck bypass of Zelienople can now be signed. ;)
« Last Edit: December 22, 2011, 09:10:56 PM by rickmastfan67 »
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Re: SW Pennsylvania
« Reply #5 on: December 27, 2011, 11:45:09 AM »

When they built I-79 through that area, they never thought that the area would grow.  Boy they where wrong and it has cost them a lot of money to upgrade the ramps from partial ramps to a full interchange.  But they have upgraded what they can. 

Yeah, I hear ya.  Too bad they can't make the PA-68 interchange a full one. :(

You know, PennDOT should post a US-19 Truck route there now. ;)  Since Exit #88 is now a full interchange, a truck bypass of Zelienople can now be signed. ;)

I think if they where to sign it as US  19 Truck people would get confused with McKnight Road in Allegheny County. 

It would be very costly complete the ramps at PA Route 68, for the North Bound on ramp and South Bound off ramp which would have to span the Connequenessing Creek. 
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rickmastfan67

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Re: SW Pennsylvania
« Reply #6 on: December 27, 2011, 07:59:51 PM »

When they built I-79 through that area, they never thought that the area would grow.  Boy they where wrong and it has cost them a lot of money to upgrade the ramps from partial ramps to a full interchange.  But they have upgraded what they can. 

Yeah, I hear ya.  Too bad they can't make the PA-68 interchange a full one. :(

You know, PennDOT should post a US-19 Truck route there now. ;)  Since Exit #88 is now a full interchange, a truck bypass of Zelienople can now be signed. ;)

I think if they where to sign it as US  19 Truck people would get confused with McKnight Road in Allegheny County.

I personally don't think people would get confused, but that's just me.  Maybe sign it as "Alt US-19" instead?  And then put up signs for through trucks to follow Alt US-19.  But also put up signs allowing trucks going SB on US-19 saying trucks are allowed to use US-19 to get to PA-68 EB (since no access going SB on I-79) and a sign going NB on US-19 allowing trucks to get to PA-68 WB.  Otherwise, ban trucks from downtown there (unless they need to get to PA-288).

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Re: SW Pennsylvania
« Reply #7 on: December 29, 2011, 01:06:18 PM »

When they built I-79 through that area, they never thought that the area would grow.  Boy they where wrong and it has cost them a lot of money to upgrade the ramps from partial ramps to a full interchange.  But they have upgraded what they can. 

Yeah, I hear ya.  Too bad they can't make the PA-68 interchange a full one. :(

You know, PennDOT should post a US-19 Truck route there now. ;)  Since Exit #88 is now a full interchange, a truck bypass of Zelienople can now be signed. ;)

I think if they where to sign it as US  19 Truck people would get confused with McKnight Road in Allegheny County.

I personally don't think people would get confused, but that's just me.  Maybe sign it as "Alt US-19" instead?  And then put up signs for through trucks to follow Alt US-19.  But also put up signs allowing trucks going SB on US-19 saying trucks are allowed to use US-19 to get to PA-68 EB (since no access going SB on I-79) and a sign going NB on US-19 allowing trucks to get to PA-68 WB.  Otherwise, ban trucks from downtown there (unless they need to get to PA-288).

BYPASS also works as well.  But I know that require additonal signage, on the PennDOT's part and it has never been signed in that area any different, and I lived around that area for the majority of my life.  I know going down I-79 Southbound from Erie to Zelienople that the there is a US 19 Shield on the guide sign. 

I have also been on PA 288, which goes northwest to Ellwood City, there are plenty of trucks that take that Route, because the stop bar has been set far back so that a large Tractor Trailer can turn from US 19 South to PA 288.  I don't see them posting that, although the municipality can make a request to post the road for a Ton Limit. 
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Re: SW Pennsylvania
« Reply #8 on: December 29, 2011, 06:30:34 PM »

Rater than needing to upgrade the sothern Zelienople exit to accomodate a bypass US 19 they could utilize the northern half of the Evans City exit, which is far more accomodating for that use.
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rickmastfan67

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Re: SW Pennsylvania
« Reply #9 on: December 29, 2011, 08:54:31 PM »

Rater than needing to upgrade the sothern Zelienople exit to accomodate a bypass US 19 they could utilize the northern half of the Evans City exit, which is far more accomodating for that use.

That's what I was suggesting, but not in so many words. :sombrero:

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Re: SW Pennsylvania
« Reply #10 on: February 01, 2012, 12:49:09 PM »

They've been replacing some signs on the West End Bridge and approaches... replacing the "boxy" changable signs that have been there for years.
I noticed this sign yesterday while on a bike ride (I'll take as many upper-50's/60's days in Winter that Mother Nature wants to dish out!):



This is the first time I'm aware of that PA-65 South is mentioned from the W.E. Bridge.  
Up until about 2 years ago, SB Ohio River Blvd had a BGS prior to going under the West End Bridge that said "END 65", and I can't recall any signs after it indicating SB 65 going all the way to the Ft. Duquesne Bridge.

EDIT:  I guess it should say "TO" North Truck 19.  Either that, or, with all the West End Circle work directly connecting the bridge to the PA-51 highway, PennDOT is planning on moving the "Truck" route to the West End Bridge... Which could be a good idea. With the height restrictions, and some cargo restrictions thru the Ft. Pitt Tunnels, a "Truck" route that can accommodate more trucks makes sense.
« Last Edit: February 01, 2012, 01:14:44 PM by Mr_Northside »
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rickmastfan67

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Re: SW Pennsylvania
« Reply #11 on: February 02, 2012, 12:21:01 PM »

EDIT:  I guess it should say "TO" North Truck 19.  Either that, or, with all the West End Circle work directly connecting the bridge to the PA-51 highway, PennDOT is planning on moving the "Truck" route to the West End Bridge... Which could be a good idea. With the height restrictions, and some cargo restrictions thru the Ft. Pitt Tunnels, a "Truck" route that can accommodate more trucks makes sense.

Weirdly enough, but it seems like they've always had no "TO" when referencing North Truck US-19 on the WEB (per StreetView).  I mean, if they do want to reroute it onto the WEB officially, they need to submit an application to the AASHTO as Truck US-19 is the only officially approved Truck Route that I know of.  Then you would have the crazy thing of US-19 and Truck US-19 sharing the same highway.  But you could eliminate that confusion by putting US-19 onto the Parkways to replace Truck US-19 on them.  The signage @ Exit #1B-C is already setup for that.

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Re: SW Pennsylvania
« Reply #12 on: March 14, 2012, 06:51:23 PM »

Hopped off the bike to walk across (most of) the West End Bridge today (A cloudless day in the 'Burgh, which could end up being in the top 5 nicest of the year....)

They've replaced all the sings, including the changeable "box signs" (can't think of a better name) with regular signs with some list portions.



This is the sign bridge preceding the one I photoed a couple of weeks ago.  Still worded so it makes it seem like the southernmost mile of Ohio River Blvd is a wrong-way duplex of Truck North US-19 & South PA-65.





View of the new changeable lit signs, looking southbound.  The way the picture was taken makes the "Both Lanes" look like there may be issues with the sign, but to look at it (without the camera), it looks quite fine.





A closer up view of the signs in the previous pic.  Once again, the apparent defects in the lit signs only appear in the picture.  (they look fine without the camera).  And, as you can kind of tell in the previous pic, the "background' of the "Both Lanes" is actually a green that closely matches the regular sign.
« Last Edit: March 14, 2012, 06:55:26 PM by Mr_Northside »
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Re: SW Pennsylvania
« Reply #13 on: March 14, 2012, 07:02:03 PM »

I think the green background issues you photographed have to do with the refresh rate of the digital display.  it's similar to taking a photo of an old CRT monitor - you might not get the entire image.  in this case, you do not get all the green.  it is imperceptible to the eye, but at the very short exposure lengths used in daytime photography, you can observe the issue.
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Re: SW Pennsylvania
« Reply #14 on: March 15, 2012, 04:10:17 PM »

The way the picture was taken makes the "Both Lanes" look like there may be issues with the sign, but to look at it (without the camera), it looks quite fine.

Once again, the apparent defects in the lit signs only appear in the picture.  (they look fine without the camera).

The shorthand way of saying that is "artifact of the camera" if it's the result of the way the camera captured the image, or "artifact of the photograph" if it's the result of the way the image is processed, printed, or displayed.

As in "That weird thing going on there with the sign is merely artifact of the camera."  :biggrin:

So now that the West End project is all finished, how's it working out? Does traffic flow well?
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rickmastfan67

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Re: SW Pennsylvania
« Reply #15 on: June 12, 2012, 08:18:51 AM »

There are now plans out to replace the "Hulton Bridge" between Harmar and Oakmont.

There is a rendering of what the new bridge will look like here.

The new bridge will be 4 lanes across unlike the current bridge which is only two lanes wide.

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Re: SW Pennsylvania
« Reply #16 on: June 12, 2012, 01:50:48 PM »

Though I am always a fan of increased capacity, do the appraoches, either current or future ever warrant 4 lanes.
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Re: SW Pennsylvania
« Reply #17 on: June 12, 2012, 01:58:03 PM »

Though I am always a fan of increased capacity, do the appraoches, either current or future ever warrant 4 lanes.
Since bridges are natural bottlenecks, as long as you widen to the first major intersection the capacity won't be wasted.
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Re: SW Pennsylvania
« Reply #18 on: June 12, 2012, 02:06:35 PM »

Yeah... either ends of the bridge can have a lane act as a turn lane.  In this case, especially the signal @ Freeport Rd.  Instead of one long single-lane line of traffic turning either left or right @ the end of the bridge, 2 shorter lines can do both at the same time.
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Re: SW Pennsylvania
« Reply #19 on: October 06, 2012, 01:50:46 PM »

Plan for Palmer airport connector gets update

I'd be surprised to see any dirt turn for any of this in this decade.
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Re: SW Pennsylvania
« Reply #20 on: January 17, 2013, 09:04:09 AM »

City of Pittsburgh to replace 82 year old Greenfield Bridge

http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/local/neighborhoods-city/greenfield-bridge-being-built-anew-670689/

The demolition of the open-spandrel arched concrete bridge will lead to the Parkway East (I-376) being closed for one week in December 2015.   It's a much needed project just for motorist safety on the Parkway.

The closure of the bridge will also cause a large detour between the city's Oakland and Greenfield neighborhoods.  It's also a key back way access point for Mon Valley and South Hills commuters/students to Oakland.
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Re: SW Pennsylvania
« Reply #21 on: May 15, 2013, 04:34:47 PM »

31st Street Bridge to get a new name

I'm curious to see if this will be a true "re-name", or a "co-name" - It will get signs put up with the new name, but also retain the 31st St. Bridge name. 
I guess when PennDOT puts up/uncovers signs as the interchange with PA-28 progresses we'll see what name is on the BGS's.
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Re: SW Pennsylvania
« Reply #22 on: May 19, 2013, 11:33:53 AM »

It'll probably end up like the R. D. Fleming:  official name on signs but still referred to it with the street name by the public.
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Re: SW Pennsylvania
« Reply #23 on: July 17, 2013, 04:37:14 PM »

A new project for Mr. Northside to keep track of.

Two miles of West Carson Street (PA 51) from the West End BRidge to McKees Rocks to be totally rebuilt.  A much needed - and often overlooked - rehab.

http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/news/transportation/outbound-west-carson-street-to-close-for-2-years-695633/
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Re: SW Pennsylvania
« Reply #24 on: July 17, 2013, 09:20:44 PM »

A new project for Mr. Northside to keep track of.

Two miles of West Carson Street (PA 51) from the West End BRidge to McKees Rocks to be totally rebuilt.  A much needed - and often overlooked - rehab.

Yeah... though probably almost exclusively from the vantage point from across the river, though that's probably one of the best for this project.
And, of course, this is gonna make a mess of things. 
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