By John Shumway

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Coming into the city on the Parkway North is going to be interesting from now till September as the southbound upgrade gets underway from Camp Horne Road to the Fort Duquesne Bridge.

The new wrinkle is the crossover under construction just before Camp Horne Road. Southbound traffic will split – local traffic going to the right, and express traffic to the left.

“If you are just heading into the city, get in that express lane. If you need one of the exits, go in the local lane,” says PennDOT’s Dan Cessna.

The express lane will be running in the fast lane of the northbound side, with northbound traffic squeezed to the shoulder and right lane.

It could be a bit confusing.

“Especially the first few days, there is confusion,” says Cessna. “Which lane do I get in? What you hope is you don’t have people making erratic movements.”

The two lanes will rejoin in the HOV lane, and the McKnight entrance ramp will feed its own lane until all the traffic returns to the mainline just past Venture Street.

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The speed limit in the work zone will be a strictly-enforced 45 miles per hour.

“If you are caught speeding in the construction zone, 11 miles per hour over the speed limit, it’s an automatic 15-day suspension of your driver’s license,” said Trooper Melinda Bondarenka, of Pennsylvania State Police.

Last year, there were 266 work zone crashes, including three fatalities. The biggest threats to construction workers are speed and “a lot texting while driving,” says Cessna.

“Distractions, a lot of general distractions,” he added.

That is true for every work zone, and the police will be doing unannounced random enforcement.

“At the end of the day, we want to send everyone home, both the workers and the public, to their homes safely,” said Jason Koss, of Constructors of Western Pa.

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