PennDOT: Metered Ramps on Parkway East a No-Go

In January, engineers will begin evaluating the entire Parkway East corridor and its adjoining network of roads for alternate improvements.

PennDOT has abandoned its plans to design and build metered ramps and use traffic signals to help with congestion leading from the Parkway East to the Squirrel Hill Tunnel.

The Post-Gazette reported Wednesday that PennDOT has chosen not to pursue a $5 million plan to design and build a ramp-metering system after a study commissioned from the University of Pittsburgh concluded a combination of ramp closures and traffic signals could help relieve congestion.

Dan Cessna, executive for PennDOT District 11, told the Post-Gazette that  engineers will begin evaluating the entire Parkway East corridor and its adjoining network of roads in January.

For full story, click here.

The plan met with opposition from officials in the communities around Regent Square—Swissvale, Edgewood, Forest Hills, Wilkinsburg and the City of Pittsburgh and other local groups.

Edgewood Council President Pat Schaefer on Wednesday thanked the groups that offered opposition for their engagement in the multi-municipal concern.  

"(Swissvale Councilman) Darrell Rapp found out about the possibility of this project early this year and shared the information or we would not have known," Schaefer wrote in an email to opposition leaders on Wednesday.  "Thanks to the COG leadership for setting up an information session for the local governments impacted. The Regent Square Civic Association for being the citizen champions setting up meetings and to all for keeping the lines of communication open."

Schaefer credited the CONNECT staff for researching and obtaining documents so that leaders could speak on fact not rumor or hearsay. She also thanked state Sen. Jay Costa, and county Council members Barbara Daly-Danko and Chuck Martoni for their work and local media "for helping to bring this into the light." She also gave special thanks to all the taxpayers who took the time to respond.

Heidi Hauser Green November 21, 2012 at 06:57 PM
This is good news. However, PennDOT has not--as far as I can tell from the P-G article--removed the possibility of metering/closures from the table. What they've said is that they are taking no action now, and that they will do more analysis. From the article: Mr. Cessna said engineers in January will begin evaluating the entire Parkway East corridor and its adjoining network of roads. "PennDOT is really taking a step back and looking at how we're preparing our scope of work for Parkway East to evaluate the entire transportation network that serves the communities and the Parkway East along that corridor," Mr. Cessna said in a phone interview. "There's been no decisions with regard to any ramps that might or could be closed or metered." As transportation officials looked at the Pitt study, they realized a more comprehensive examination was needed, he said. And after metered ramping was included in a draft plan for transportation projects, they found it receiving criticism from residents who thought restricted ramp access was a certainty. "Due to lack of information, it's being received very negatively," he said. Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/news/transportation/penndot-pulls-plan-to-curb-ramp-access-on-parkway-east-663024/#ixzz2CsvKfgXh
Sue T November 21, 2012 at 06:59 PM
That you Pat Schaefer, COGs, RSCA and all others for their efforts on this. Now lets just hope the comprehensive study comes up with a solution that is fair to all of us along the parkway east.
Paula B. November 22, 2012 at 03:50 PM
This is great news, traffic flow can be improved in so many other ways, including effective public transportation!


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