Shuster celebrates road project

April 07, 1998|By DON AINES

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - The bulldozers aren't expected for about two more weeks, but U.S. Rep. Bud Shuster and other state and local officials held a ground-breaking ceremony Tuesday for a $4.5 million project to widen a 1.2-mile stretch of Wayne Avenue.

The project will broaden the roadway from three to five lanes over much of the stretch between Kriner Road and Orchard Drive, according to Barry Hoffman, District 8 engineer for the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation. He said the project also includes four new signals at the Interstate 81 on- and off-ramps at Exit 5, Stouffer Avenue and Orchard Drive.

Hoffman said the project will begin April 20 and is expected to be completed by December.

"In 1991 when I wrote this in as a special project ... we thought this would be a simple process," said Shuster, R-Pa., of the $1.84 million included in that year's Intermodal Transportation Efficiency Act. At the time, Shuster said he figured the project would get started within about two years, but there were delays.


Shuster said more federal funding has been added to the project since then. Hoffman said the federal share is now $3.6 million, with $910,000 coming from the state.

"Chambers-5 (Business Park) was just opening and we thought there would be a traffic problem," Shuster said of the original appropriation in 1991. Now the industrial park on Orchard Drive is nearly full and Wayne Avenue is used by 900 trucks and 18,000 vehicles a day, he said.

Chambersburg Borough Council President Bernard L. Washabaugh said he believes the project will handle traffic along the road for another 20 years and hopes other projects will help relieve congestion around the community.

One of those projects is $18 million in improvements along U.S. 30, including widening the road from three to five lanes between the borough's east side and Fayetteville, Pa. One project that has been delayed by legal challenges and other obstacles is a proposed Exit 7 to Walker Road off Interstate 81.

Money for that project was included by Shuster in a federal highway bill in 1986.

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