Pa. Turnpike to close this weekend between New Stanton, Breezewood
A bridge removal project in Somerset will close an 86-mile stretch of the Pennsylvania Turnpike in both directions for seven hours late Saturday through Sunday morning between the New Stanton and Breezewood exits, according to the turnpike commission.
The section of turnpike will be closed starting at 11 p.m. Saturday until about 6 a.m. Sunday, weather permitting.
The closure is needed for crews to safely remove the temporary bridge that carried traffic on North Center Avenue over the turnpike at milepost 110 in Somerset, Somerset County, while the construction of the new bridge was completed, according to turnpike spokeswoman Susan Jones. The new bridge opened to traffic with restrictions July 19.
Throughout the evening prior to the closure, announcements will be made inside both the north and south turnpike service plazas in Somerset and the North Midway Service Plaza in Bedford County to warn customers that they will not be permitted to continue driving after 11 p.m. Saturday.
Motorists traveling eastbound at New Stanton are advised that traffic will exit the turnpike at the New Stanton interchange and it’s recommended they take Route 119 North to Turnpike Route 66 North to Route 22 East, all in Westmoreland County to I-99 South to Route 30 East, all in Bedford County. Traffic will re-enter the turnpike at the Breezewood Interchange.
The detour is approximately 127 miles.
Westbound traffic will exit the turnpike at the Breezewood Interchange and take the recommended detour along Route 30 West to Interstate 99 North to U.S. Route 22 West to Turnpike Route 66 South. Traffic will re-enter the toll road at the New Stanton interchange.
Such an extensive detour is recommended because shorter alternate routes cannot safely accommodate the diverted traffic volumes nor the truck traffic, Jones said.
Jones noted that the Bedford interchange will be open to eastbound traffic and the Somerset and Donegal interchanges will be open to westbound traffic.
During the closure, expect higher traffic volumes on detour roads. Message boards will be in place to inform customers of the closure.
More information on the project is available at www.patpconstruction.com/mp110/default.aspx.
Paul Peirce is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Paul at 724-850-2860, [email protected] or via Twitter .