Ahead For 422 Drivers: Ramp Closures, Lane Shifts
SANATOGA PA – Drivers on U.S. Route 422 between the Sanatoga and Route 724 interchanges can look forward to closed ramps, shifting traffic lanes, and new limits to access of some parts of the highway, possibly beginning as soon as April (2015), Lower Pottsgrove Police Chief Michael Foltz told the township Board of Commissioners on Monday (March 2).
Some of the coming changes may last for as little as 90 days. Others may persist for as much as three years, Foltz reported, in summarizing a meeting held Feb. 18 with Pennsylvania Department of Transportation and other officials regarding construction activity on the four-lane highway.
Here’s what’s ahead, Foltz said:
During April or May, depending on weather conditions, PennDOT contractors intend to close the eastbound entrance ramp from 724 to 422. It could remain closed for up to three years, as the remaining portion of the bridge crossing the Schuylkill River there is completed. Eastbound traffic will continue to be able to exit at 724 in North Coventry Township.
One township official said he “won’t be sorry” to see 724 on-ramp access end because motorists occasionally try to speed into the traffic flow at that point, creating accident hazards.
During June, it’s expected that the first new section of the bridge crossing the Schuylkill between 724 and Armand Hammer will be completed and opened with a single lane for eastbound traffic. Westbound traffic will then be shifted onto the other section of the new bridge. The bridge traffic re-routing is anticipated to last between two and three years while remaining bridge work is finished.
During late June or early July, contractors will similarly close the westbound entrance ramp from Armand Hammer Boulevard to 422. That will allow contractors to build a new ramp during the following 90 days, and then re-open westbound access. The end of the existing ramp currently is controlled by a stop sign, and as 422 westbound traffic speeds past vehicles trying to enter the highway are regularly backed up on the ramp.
Foltz acknowledged the ramp closures and lane shifts will require drivers to exercise more caution, and to stay within the 40-miles-per-hour speed limit enforced around the clock across the construction zone. To that end, the chief reported his officers handled 58 traffic violations during February; about half of them affecting drivers within the zone.
Township Emergency Management Coordinator Ray Lopez also attended the PennDOT meeting.