PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — More road construction means another round of closures and more traffic headaches for drivers.
In addition to another closure of the Squirrel Hill Tunnel, PennDOT has major plans for Route 28 –it’s a stretch that is already a mess on most days.
Sitting in the traffic waiting to merge can be a bit trying for outbound drivers. But this weekend, inbound drivers will get to share the pain.
“We’re going to be transitioning motorists off the existing 28 travel lanes and onto new temporary lanes very close to the hillside against the new walls that are under construction for the last six months,” said Dan Cessna, of PennDOT.
The crews are taking advantage of every dry moment to get the asphalt down, so the traffic can move over Friday night and it will only be one lane in each direction.
“This is the big dig in fact, where we actually start excavating 28 – the existing 28 – to create the lower area of 28 to build a bridge across at 31st Street Bridge to actually create the interchange,” says Cessna.
That work will begin with the removal of the north end of the 31st Street Bridge, and then the excavation starts, which will eventually take the driving lanes under the 31st Street Bridge Interchange.
The single lane in each direction is a weekend traffic impediment only.
“By Sunday morning, we expect to have back open the existing configuration – two lanes inbound and one lane outbound – and that will remain in place through the fall,” Cessna says.
It sounds fairly manageable until you remember that 28 is a primary alternative to the Parkway East and the inbound tunnel at Squirrel Hill closes again Friday night.
“With the Squirrel Hill Tunnel under construction, it is going to be a challenge,” says Cessna.