I-76 Viaducts

PennDOT, PA State Police, DEP, and Keep PA Beautiful Highlight Anti-Littering Efforts, Including Litter Enforcement Corridors

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT), the Pennsylvania State Police (PSP), the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), and Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful (KPB) collaborated today along a Philadelphia region litter enforcement corridor on U.S. 202 (Parkway) to highlight anti-littering efforts, and explain the creation of and penalties of littering in a Litter Enforcement Corridor.

PennDOT, PSP and KPB held a series of events statewide to explain what Litter Enforcement Corridors – like those located on U.S. 202, Interstate 476, and U.S. 30 in the Philadelphia Region – are, why they are important, and the penalties for littering in them.

“PennDOT is proud to be collaborating with the Pennsylvania State Police and Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful to build awareness of Litter Enforcement Corridors,” said PennDOT Secretary Yassmin Gramian. “We encourage our municipal partners to reach out to their local PennDOT District Office for more information on designating a Litter Enforcement Corridor in their area.”

Litter enforcement Corridors have a high aesthetic or historic value worth preserving or need some additional help with litter issues. Approved segments will be marked with signs to notify motorists of additional litter fines: doubled penalties for motorists caught scattering rubbish and tripled when it is done by a commercial business.

“Waste continuously being disposed of into our environment is a complete eyesore, and it makes Pennsylvania look like a sad place to live,” said Trooper Loretta Miree, PSP Community Service Officer. “To avoid a ticket, be considerate and dispose of your trash in a can.”

For more information on establishing a Litter Enforcement Corridor, consult PennDOT’s Roadside Enforcement Manual on www.PennDOT.gov.

In addition, PennDOT, DEP, and KPB highlighted ongoing anti-littering efforts and urged the public to please help by not littering and consider joining the litter clean-up effort through volunteer groups.

“Litter has been and continues to be a problem throughout Pennsylvania and our roadways and communities suffer because of it,” said Robyn Briggs, PennDOT District 6 Community Relations Coordinator. “Any help from the public to not litter or joining or creating an Adopt-the-Highway (AAH) group, frees up resources and money for roadway infrastructure.”

Programs such as AAH allow PennDOT to focus resources on maintaining and improving state highways, instead of money spent on cleaning up litter. PennDOT spends over $13 million a year on litter efforts statewide and nearly $5 million a year in the Philadelphia region alone.

“Litter pollution is a stain on Pennsylvania, from our roads and neighborhoods to our countryside and woodlands. It affects our health and safety, our economy, and the natural environment we depend on and cherish. With PennDOT and Keep PA Beautiful, DEP has supported volunteer cleanup events that have been an amazing help, removing many tons of trash,” said DEP Secretary Patrick McDonnell. “As litter continues to pile up, however, this Litter Enforcement Corridor is a good example of the direction we must move in, prevention. We’re excited to continue our strong partnership in coordinating the development of a new littering action plan that will include data-grounded strategies in enforcement, outreach, infrastructure, and community support to reduce littering statewide.”

“Beautiful communities start by keeping streets and public rights-of-way cleared of litter. Our volunteers annually remove 7 million pounds of trash through various cleanup programs in public spaces throughout the state, including our roads,” said Lisa Howdyshell, Executive Director Keep Norristown Beautiful, on behalf of Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful. “The start of this litter enforcement program is another tool to keep all of Pennsylvania beautiful.”

For more information on how the public can help with anti-littering efforts to keep our state highways clean see PennDOT’s Roadside Beautification webpage. Please also see PennDOT’s website for District 6’s Student Anti-litter campaign.

I-76 West to Close at Night June 15-17 at 30th Street for Viaduct Construction in Philadelphia

Westbound Interstate 76 at 30th Street or the westbound off-ramp to 30th Street will be closed alternately on Tuesday, June 15, through Thursday, June 17, from 9:00 PM to 5:00 AM the following morning for viaduct construction in Center City Philadelphia, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) announced today.
When westbound I-76 is closed, traffic will be detoured to the off-ramp at 30th Street and follow Schuylkill Avenue to the ramp back to westbound I-76 at Market Street.
When the westbound off-ramp to 30th Street is closed, westbound I-76 also will be reduced to one lane between 30th Street and Interstate 676. Off-ramp traffic will be detoured east on I-676, exit at 23rd Street, turn left on 22nd Street to the ramp to I-676 west, then take the ramp to I-76 east and the exit at 30th Street.
The lane and ramp closures will allow crews to install overhead electrical conduit and repair the retaining wall between the expressway and the Schuylkill River.
Drivers are advised to use alternate routes or allow extra time when traveling through the work area because significant backups and delays will occur during all of the scheduled activities.  All operations are weather dependent. 
Work on this project will be in accordance with Centers for Disease Control and state Department of Health guidance as well as a project-specific COVID-19 safety plan, which will include protocols for social distancing, use of face coverings, personal and job-site cleaning protocols, management of entries to the jobsite, special signing, and relevant training.
Repairs to the overhead viaduct are part of PennDOT’s $103.6 million project to rehabilitate the Chestnut Street bridge over the Schuylkill River and eight other nearby structures, including those carrying Schuylkill Avenue over I-76 between Walnut Street and Market Street. More information is available at www.chestnutstreetbridges.com.
Motorists can check conditions on more than 40,000 roadway miles by visiting www.511PA.com. 511PA, which is free and available 24 hours a day, provides traffic delay warnings, weather forecasts, traffic speed information and access to more than 1,000 traffic cameras.
For a complete list of construction projects impacting state-owned highways in Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia counties, visit www.penndot.gov/District6TrafficBulletin.

PennDOT Begins Posting Variable Speed Limits on I-76 (Schuylkill Expressway) between King of Prussia and Philadelphia

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) announced today the posting of Variable Speed Limits (VSL) and Queue Detection and Warning (QDW) messages along 14 miles of Interstate 76 (Schuylkill Expressway) between King of Prussia and Philadelphia.

On April 8, PennDOT activated 72 VSL signs and an end-to-end QDW system along eastbound and westbound I-76 (Schuylkill Expressway) from the Pennsylvania Turnpike in Montgomery County to the U.S. 1 North (Roosevelt Expressway) Interchange in Philadelphia. The initial activation began a technology testing period and allowed drivers to become accustomed to the new signs.

Beginning May 11, I-76 (Schuylkill Expressway) motorists will notice speed limits begin to change based on real-time travel conditions. This is an indication of congestion occurring ahead and an effort to improve the flow of traffic and reduce stop-and-go conditions and the potential for rear-end crashes.

Existing static speed limit signs have been removed and posted speed limits will begin to change along the corridor. Initially, the VSL signs will vary between 35 mph and 55 mph based on real-time traffic and safety conditions (50 mph maximum in the City of Philadelphia). This range of speed limits may be slightly adjusted after the performance of the system and traffic progression results are collected and analyzed.

Speed limits posted to the new VSL signs on I-76 (Schuylkill Expressway) will serve as enforceable, regulatory speed limits, not recommended speed advisories. All motorists should follow the posted speed limit on the VSLs.

Additional information specific to VSL signs as well as a list of frequently asked questions for further reference can be found at http://transform76.com/smart-corridor-initiatives/variable-speed-limits/.

The activation of the VSL and QDW systems is the first phase of a long-range, comprehensive, multimodal transportation management plan designed to enhance travel and safety along the I-76 (Schuylkill Expressway) corridor between King of Prussia and Philadelphia.

The next phase, currently in design, will include additional active traffic management strategies such as the modernization of traffic signal systems along several roadways running near the expressway, and transforming the existing shoulders on portions of I-76 (Schuylkill Expressway) to accommodate an additional travel lane or “flexible” travel lane during peak travel times.

For additional details on this corridor-wide improvement plan, visit www.transform76.com.

PennDOT Highlights 2021 Philadelphia Region Construction Season, Highlights More than 200 Projects


The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) today highlighted more than 200 highway and bridge projects anticipated to begin or continue across PennDOT’s five-county District 6 region, spanning Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, and Philadelphia counties, during this construction season.

PennDOT, AAA Mid-Atlantic, and the Philadelphia Police also urged motorists to drive cautiously in work zones – for their safety and that of workers – in observance of National Work Zone Awareness Week that runs from April 26-30.

Today’s announcement which highlighted more than $2.4 billion in transportation investments throughout the region this construction season, and includes resurfacing nearly 200 miles of highways and fixing or replacing 45 bridges, was made at the PennDOT Interstate 95 North stockpile in Philadelphia overlooking the I-95/Betsy Ross Bridge ramp construction.

“It is vital that we continue to invest in our aging infrastructure and we look forward to the continued opportunity to improve, strengthen, and secure our vast transportation network in this region in 2021,” said Acting District 6 Executive Mike Rebert. “As a reminder, motorists should use caution in work zones so our crew members can get home safely each day to their family and friends after completing this critical work.”

Notable projects that are expected to begin this year include:

  • Bristol Road intersection improvement project in Bucks County ($16.3 million estimate);
  • Boot Road bridge replacement in Chester County ($8.2 million estimate);
  • Little Washington Road bridge replacement in Chester County ($3.5 million estimate);
  • Bethel Road roundabout project in Delaware County ($1.2 million estimate);
  • Route 309 connector project in Montgomery County ($35 million estimate);
  • U.S. 422 improvement project in Montgomery County ($77 million estimate);
  • University Avenue bridge replacement/Schuylkill River Trail project in Philadelphia ($48.5 million estimate); and
  • Interstate 95 ITS enhancement project in Philadelphia ($33.7 million estimate).

Notable projects that will continue this year include:

  • Two U.S. 1 corridor improvement projects in Bucks County ($207.1 million);
  • Route 309 pavement preservation project in Bucks County ($54.3 million);
  • U.S. 30 ITS enhancement project in Chester County ($8.1 million);
  • Interstate 95 pavement preservation project in Delaware County ($69.1 million);
  • Three U.S. 202 widening, improvement projects in Montgomery County ($151.2 million);
  • U.S. 1 Wayne Junction Viaduct rehabilitation project in Philadelphia ($92 million);
  • Chestnut Street bridges rehabilitation project in Philadelphia ($103.3 million); and
  • Three mainline Interstate 95 reconstruction projects in Philadelphia ($ 489.3 million).

More information on PennDOT’s planned and active construction projects is available at www.projects.penndot.gov. PennDOT District 6 oversees and maintains 3,553 state highway miles and 2,760 bridges. To see all that District 6 has accomplished and continues to do visit  www.penndot.gov/D6Results

As construction projects are underway in the region, the traveling public can anticipate seeing many work zones and are urged to keep in mind their safety and the safety of highway workers.

While construction and maintenance workers are on roadways to better the public’s quality of life, PennDOT and safety partners urged motorists to help keep workers and themselves safe by obeying speed limits and avoiding distracted driving.

In 2020, there were 1,412 work zone crashes, statewide, resulting in 15 fatalities. Since 1970, 89 PennDOT employees have been killed in the line of duty statewide.

PennDOT, in partnership with The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission and Pennsylvania State Police, enacted the Automated Work Zone Speed Enforcement program where cameras were deployed in active work zones in March 2020. Locations are posted on WorkZoneCameras.PennDOT.gov. The program aims to reduce work zone speeds, change driver behavior, and improve work zone safety for workers and motorists. Results have shown that vehicles traveling over the posted work zone speed limit has seen a 16.6 percent reduction since AWSZE began last March.

If you encounter our work zones, please keep the following tips in mind for your safety and the safety of highway workers:

  • Drive the posted work-zone speed limit;
  • Avoid distractions, stay off your phone, and give your full attention to the road;
  • Stay alert and pay close attention to signs and flaggers;
  • Turn on your headlights if signs instruct you to do so;
  • Maintain a safe distance around vehicles. Don’t tailgate;
  • Always buckle up;
  • Traffic patterns can change rapidly;
  • When approaching lane closures, move into the open lane as soon as possible;
  • If driving a large truck or bus, remember you have limited maneuverability, so proceed with caution; and
  • Slow down.

To learn more about work zone safety and other PennDOT safety initiatives, visit PennDOT.gov/Safety.

Construction Update: Spring 2021

Construction on Center City Viaduct Substantially Completed

Construction to rehabilitate the Interstate 76 viaduct between University Avenue and 30th Street has been substantially completed with structural repairs finished, a new riding surface placed, and a new median barrier installed on the mile-long Center City structure.

Rebars in place prior to placing concrete for the new median barrier.

Off-peak and weekend lane restrictions and full closures in one direction will take place periodically through the spring as the contractor completes pavement grinding, installs rumble strips, plowable lane markers and new pavement markings, and finishes other post-construction “punch list” items to wrap up the two-plus years of construction on the $39.8 million project.

The new median barrier in place near the South Street exit.

Since starting repairs in spring 2019, PennDOT has rehabilitated the support columns beneath the viaduct, cleaned and refurbished the viaduct’s stormwater drainage system, repaired the concrete deck’s expansion dams and parapets, milled and repaved the viaduct’s riding surface, and installed a new concrete median barrier.

For the new riding surface, PennDOT used a fast-curing synthetic polyester polymer concrete (PPC) (see right) that allowed the viaduct’s surface to be rehabilitated while minimizing the need for long-term lane closures normally required for conventional concrete paving materials.

In addition, PennDOT’s contractor rehabilitated the bridge that carries the Schuylkill Expressway over Route 23 and Arrowmink Creek in West Conshohocken Borough, Montgomery County, and completed similar repairs to several other I-76 bridges in Montgomery County.

Federal REAL ID Enforcement Begins Oct. 1, 2021

​PennDOT has surpassed 1 million optional REAL ID-compliant driver’s licenses, ID cards

With only six months left until the federal enforcement of REAL ID begins for commercial domestic air travel and other federal purposes, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) is reminding Pennsylvania residents who want a REAL ID-compliant driver’s licenses and photo ID cards to gather their needed documents as soon as possible to ensure they leave plenty of time to get their REAL ID before the federal enforcement date. 

To date PennDOT has issued approximately 1.1 million REAL ID products. 

REAL ID is a federal law that affects how states issue driver’s licenses and ID cards if they are going to be acceptable for federal purposes, such as boarding a domestic flight or entering a federal building that requires federally acceptable ID upon entry. A federally acceptable form of identification (whether it’s a Pennsylvania REAL ID driver’s license or ID card, a valid U.S. Passport/Passport Card, a military ID, etc.) must be used for these purposes on and after October 1, 2021. 

There is no requirement that any resident obtain a REAL ID; PennDOT continues to offer standard-issue driver’s licenses and photo IDs.

“Although October may seem far away right now, we encourage our customers who want a REAL ID to get one as soon as possible,” said PennDOT Secretary Yassmin Gramian. “We continue to focus on providing the best possible customer service to all of our customers as the federal deadline approaches.”

Based on data from other states offering an optional REAL ID program, PennDOT projected that 1.3 million of its customers would get a REAL ID prior to the federal deadline of October 1, 2021. Having crossed the threshold of issuing 1 million REAL ID-compliant products in December 2020, PennDOT is well-positioned to reach this target by the federal enforcement deadline.

Since March 1, 2019, PennDOT has processed about 5.4 million customers, with more than 1.1 million individuals choosing to opt into the REAL ID program. The remaining 4.3 million have chosen not to participate or use an alternative federally acceptable form of ID come the October deadline. 

PennDOT paused REAL ID issuance in March 2020 due to COVID-19 out of an abundance of caution and in the interest of public health and resumed issuing REAL IDs in September 2020.

Additionally, the federal Department of Homeland Security postponed the enforcement date for REAL ID from October 1, 2020, to October 1, 2021, in response to COVID-19 and the national emergency declaration. 

“We want to do everything we can to encourage residents interested in applying for a REAL ID to start the process now and be aware of all the proper documentation needed,” said Gramian. “This will help ensure our customers have their REAL ID well in advance of the October 1, 2021 deadline.”

Customers can obtain a REAL ID by presenting documents for verification and processing at any driver license center. Federal regulations require that to be issued a REAL ID-compliant product, PennDOT must verify the below documents:

  • Proof of Identity: Examples include original or certified copy of a birth certificate filed with the State Office of Vital Records/Statistics with a raised seal/embossed or valid, unexpired, U.S. Passport;
  • Proof of Social Security Number: Social security card, in current legal name;
  • Two Proofs of Current, Physical PA Address: Examples include a current, unexpired PA driver’s license or identification card, vehicle registration or a utility bill with the same name and address; and  
  • Proof of all Legal Name Changes (if current legal name is different than what is reflected on proof of identity document): Examples include a certified marriage certificate(s) issued by the County Court for each marriage, court order(s) approving a change in legal name or amended birth certificate issued by the State Office of Vital Records/Statistics. If current name is the same as what is reflected on proof of identity document (usually birth certificate or passport), a customer does not need to show proof of legal name changes.

Customers have three options for obtaining a REAL ID product: Customers may order their REAL ID online if they have been pre-verified and their REAL ID product will be mailed to them within 15 business days; they can visit any PennDOT driver license center that is open for driver license services, have their documents verified and imaged, and their REAL ID product will be mailed to them within 15 business days; or they can visit one of 13 REAL ID Centers and receive their REAL ID product over the counter at the time of service.

For a full list of driver license centers and their services, please visit the PennDOT Driver and Vehicle Services website, www.dmv.pa.gov

When a customer gets their first REAL ID product, they will pay a one-time fee of $30, plus the applicable renewal fee (current renewal fee is $30.50 for a four-year non-commercial driver’s license, and $31.50 for a photo ID). The expiration date of their initial REAL ID product will include any time remaining on their existing non-REAL ID product, plus an additional four years, unless the customer is over 65 and has a two-year license. This expiration date structure means that the customer won’t “lose” time that they’ve already paid for. After the initial REAL ID product expires, the customer will pay no additional fee, beyond regular renewal fees, to renew a REAL ID product.

REAL ID-compliant products are marked with a gold star in the upper right corner, standard-issue (non-compliant) products include the phrase “NOT FOR REAL ID PURPOSES,” per federal regulations. Sample images can be viewed on PennDOT’s website.

More information about REAL ID in Pennsylvania, including frequently asked questions and information on documents required for REAL ID, can be found at www.penndot.gov/REALID

PennDOT Extends Expiration Dates on Commercial Driver Licenses, Commercial Learner’s Permits

Commercial product extensions set to expire March 31, 2021

Harrisburg, PA – The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) announced today that expiration dates for commercial driver licenses and commercial learner’s permits will be extended for Pennsylvania residents in response to statewide COVID-19 mitigation efforts.

This will be the final extension for the following products’ expiration dates:

  • The expiration date for a commercial learner’s permit scheduled to expire from March 16, 2020, through March 31, 2021, is extended through March 31, 2021.
  • The expiration date for commercial driver licenses scheduled to expire from March 16, 2020, through March 31, 2021, is extended through March 31, 2021.

Customers with commercial products that are covered by the extension but have not yet been renewed are encouraged to renew their CDL products as soon as possible by March 31, 2021.  No further extensions will be given on these products.

Expiration extension deadlines on non-commercial driver license, photo identification cards, learner’s permits and camera cards ended on August 31, 2020.

For a list of open driver license and photo license centers and the services provided, as well as their hours of operation, please visit www.dmv.pa.gov.  

Customers may continue to complete various transactions and access multiple resources online at www.dmv.pa.gov. Driver and vehicle online services are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week and include driver’s license, photo ID and vehicle registration renewals; driver-history services; changes of address; driver license and vehicle registration restoration letters; ability to pay driver license or vehicle insurance restoration fee; driver license and photo ID duplicates; and schedule a driver’s exam. There are no additional fees for using online services.

PennDOT will continue to evaluate these processes and will communicate any changes with the public.

Additional COVID-19 information is available at www.health.pa.gov. For more information, visit www.dmv.pa.gov or www.PennDOT.gov.

Construction Update: Winter 2020-21

Construction on Center City Viaduct Nearing Completion

Construction to rehabilitate the Interstate 76 viaduct between University Avenue and 30th Street continues this winter as PennDOT’s contractor completes median replacement (see below) and other work items to rehabilitate the mile-long Center City structure.

The westbound expressway is expected to remain reduced to one lane around-the-clock through February as crews replace the remaining sections of the existing concrete median barrier. In addition to the westbound lane closure, the eastbound off-ramp and westbound on-ramp at South Street will remain closed until the completion of barrier work as well.

Eastbound off-peak and weekend lane closures will continue periodically through late winter as the contractor completes barrier, pavement markings, and other viaduct repairs.

Repairs to the structure’s support columns (see right) beneath the viaduct have been substantially completed. However, repairs to two culverts beneath the expressway between the City Avenue and Belmont Avenue exits — added to the project in late 2020 — will continue through the winter, though with minimal impacts to I-76 motorists.

PennDOT in 2019 began repairs on the topside and underside of the Interstate 76 viaduct between 30th Street and University Avenue in Philadelphia. Throughout 2019 and 2020, PennDOT’s contractor repaired the westbound and eastbound viaduct during overnight and weekend operations.

Completed repairs to the structure included cleaning and refurbishing the viaduct’s stormwater drainage system, repairs to the concrete deck’s expansion dams and parapets, and repaving the viaduct’s riding surface.

PennDOT will continue to issue weekly Travel Advisories to local media and subscribers to the project website. Go to I76viaduct.com for project-related information.

PennDOT has placed an overlay of fast-curing synthetic polyester polymer concrete (PPC) (see below) as a new riding surface on the viaduct’s travel lanes, allowing the viaduct’s surface to be rehabilitated while minimizing the need for long-term lane closures normally required for conventional concrete paving materials.

In addition, PennDOT’s contractor has finished work on the bridge that carries the Schuylkill Expressway over Route 23 and Arrowmink Creek in West Conshohocken Borough, Montgomery County. Joint, bearing, and structural steel repairs to this structure have been completed. Similar repairs to several other I-76 bridges in Montgomery County were made earlier this year.