Work will begin this month on changes to the Schuylkill Expressway designed to ease traffic congestion on one of the region’s most rage-inducing highways.
PennDot anticipates starting work later in June on about 12 miles of I-76 between King of Prussia and Philadelphia, officials with Gov. Wolf’s office said. They will include warning signs about traffic to reduce sudden, unexpected braking, and speed limits that can be changed based on highway conditions.
Construction will begin this month and should be finished by summer 2019, with a six-month testing period to follow, Wolf’s office stated. The work will cost about $8.6 million, with 80 percent of the money coming from federal sources.
A press conference is planned for Thursday morning to provide details.
Not included in the construction, though, is work that would allow six miles of the road’s shoulders to be open to traffic during busy travel times, something PennDot said it is exploring. That change is still in the design phase, officials said. PennDot has estimated opening the shoulders, which would require some road widening, could cost about $125 million.
Also to come: expanded SEPTA service on the Manayunk/Norristown Line, traffic lights on access ramps to control the number of vehicles entering the highway, and real-time transit information on electronic signs along the highway.
The road is traveled by about 200,000 vehicles in Philadelphia and 130,000 in Montgomery County each day, and saw more than 1,000 serious crashes in 2017 alone.