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Motorists will see much smoother sailing this week

U.S. 30

November 16, 2005|by DON AINES

chambersburg@herald-mail.com

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - Some of the maze of orange and white barriers restricting lanes of travel on U.S. 30 are scheduled to be removed this week as a section of the highway will open to five lanes.

"If the weather holds, we'll open up to five lanes from the borough out past Quarry Road and taper back to three lanes," said Richard Shoemaker, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation project manager for the $27 million U.S. 30 widening project. That stretch of road could be opened to five lanes by Thursday, he said.

The section set to open covers about eight-tenths of a mile of the 3.4-mile project.

There also will be a change in the traffic signal pattern at the intersection of U.S. 30, Walker Road and Stouffer Avenue, Shoemaker said. Walker is on the north side of the highway and Stouffer on the south side and the current signal pattern allows traffic to enter onto U.S. 30 from one road at a time.

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With the new pattern, the signals will allow left turns from both Walker and Stouffer simultaneously, followed by cross-traffic from both roads, Shoemaker said. Both Walker and Stouffer were realigned near the intersection to allow left-turn, through and right-turn lanes, he said.

Not all the work on this section of U.S. 30 is complete, Shoemaker said. Some overhead traffic signs will be installed this winter, as well as a temporary traffic light at Franklin Farm Lane, a late addition to the project, he said.

The traffic light at Falling Spring Road still needs to be modified for the five-lane pattern and for a business that has acquired a highway occupancy permit directly across from Falling Spring Road, he said.

"The signals will be up, but they will work independently" at first, according to Shoemaker. All the new and revamped traffic signals will later be linked by a fiber optic cable to synchronize them with lights in the borough and improve traffic flow, he said.

The project adds three traffic signals at Franklin Farm Lane, Garman Drive and Ragged Edge Road, while the lights at the Walker Road and Stouffer Avenue intersection, Interstate 81, Falling Spring Road, Sheetz, Lowe's and Wal-Mart are being modified for the widened highway, Shoemaker said.

As winter approaches, Shoemaker said work on the project will be limited by weather conditions. East of Quarry Road, stormwater drainage pipe installation work will continue as weather permits and base materials can be still be laid where the road is being reconstructed.

Work laying down the wearing course, or final layer of asphalt, on road surfaces ended Oct. 15 and cannot be resumed until mid-April, Shoemaker said.

The entire U.S. 30 widening project is scheduled to be completed in the fall of 2006.

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