Collapsed stretch of Route 30 reopens in East Pittsburgh
Tom Dorsey drove down Center Street in East Pittsburgh Wednesday and noticed a pleasant surprise — no more bright orange traffic markers blocking nearby Route 30.
"I'm like, 'Hold up, did I miss something?'" said Dorsey of Homewood while putting gas in his GMC Yukon as cars flew by on the highway. "Everybody's just traveling like it should be."
A 300-foot section of the roadway that collapsed during an April 7 landslide has reopened.
"I'm about to hop on it and make sure it's good," Dorsey said.
The road reopening will make it easier for Dorsey to get to his girlfriend's place in East Pittsburgh. Before, he took a roundabout detour to visit her.
One apartment building collapsed as a result of the April 7 landslide, and another was so badly damaged it was demolished.
PennDOT had estimated a reopening by July.
"This is excellent news for area residents who have faced travel difficulties since the road collapsed in April," Democratic state Sen. Jim Brewster said. "The roadway is used by locals and businesses and is a main access highway.
"PennDOT has done a wonderful job in moving quickly on the repairs. All those who worked to repair the road, strengthen the foundation and promote safety should be congratulated for their hard work and diligence."
Repairing the damage called for building a new retaining wall 20 feet high and 400 feet long to replace the one that collapsed. It's about the same height but more than twice the length, to protect apartment buildings on Electric Avenue.
Today is the day! Route 30 in East Pittsburgh re-opens to traffic after Landslide Repairs! GTC crews worked diligently repairing this section of Route 30 that collapsed during a landslide last month. Take a look at that before and after shot! #GTProud #Construction #Pittsburgh pic.twitter.com/Dkgz2nYrqr— Golden Triangle Construction (@GTCPGH) June 27, 2018
The new roadway and wall were to be anchored in rock, to prevent future landslides. The cost was estimated at $5 million to $7 million.
The road had been buckling for about a month before the slide.
Between 25,000 and 30,000 vehicles, many from Westmoreland County, use that section of Route 30 every day.
Renatta Signorini and Brian C. Rittmeyer are Tribune-Review staff writers.