I-76 Viaducts

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

I-76 West to Close, I-76 East One Lane at Night April 5-9 for Viaduct Repairs in Philadelphia

Westbound Interstate 76 will be closed, and eastbound I-76 will be reduced to one lane at night for overhead viaduct construction between 30th Street and Interstate 676 in Center City Philadelphia, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) announced today.

The work schedule and locations are:

  • Monday, April 5, through Friday, April 9, from 9:00 PM to 5:00 AM the following morning, westbound I-76 will be closed at 30th Street. Traffic will exit at 30th Street and follow Schuylkill Avenue to the ramp to I-76 west at Market Street; and
  • Monday, April 5, through Friday, April 9, from 9:00 PM to 5:00 AM the following morning, eastbound I-76 will be reduced to one lane 30th Street.

Construction crews will be installing retaining wall panels and removing shielding from the underside of the viaduct.
 
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.

For a complete list of construction projects impacting state-owned highways in Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia counties, visit www.penndot.gov/District6TrafficBulletin.

I-76 Nighttime Lane Closures April 5, 6 for Barrier Installation in Philadelphia

A left lane closure is scheduled in both directions on Interstate 76 between the Montgomery Drive and Spring Garden Street interchanges in Philadelphia, on Monday, April 5, and Tuesday, April 6, from 9:00 PM to 5:00 AM, for barrier installation under a project to improve travel and safety on the expressway in Philadelphia, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) announced today.
 
Motorists are advised to allow extra time when traveling through the work area because backups and delays will occur. All scheduled activities are weather dependent.
 
Under this project, milling and paving will take place on I-76 in both directions between the Montgomery Drive and Girard Avenue/U.S. 13 interchanges, as well as portions of the Montgomery Drive interchange ramps. Most of the paving will occur overnight. The deteriorating concrete median barrier will also be replaced, and high-friction surface treatment will be installed in select areas along I-76 to improve safety during inclement weather.
 
Milling and paving operations, as well as guiderail and concrete median replacements, will also occur on Route 82 (Manor Road/1st Street) in the City of Coatesville and Valley Township, Chester County. In addition, PennDOT’s contractor will reconfigure the Wagontown Road and Route 82 (Manor Road/1st Street) intersection to require vehicles to stop prior to entering Route 82 (Manor Road1st Street).
 
Road-Con, Inc. of West Chester, Chester County, is the general contractor on the $3,265,646 project which is financed with 100 percent federal funds. The entire project is expected to be completed this fall.