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.

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.

PennDOT Announces Start of Construction to Improve Safety on I-76, Route 82 (Manor Road) in Philadelphia and Chester Counties

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) announced today that construction is scheduled to begin on Thursday, November 19, on a project to improve travel and safety along Interstate 76 between the Montgomery Drive and Girard Avenue/U.S. 13 interchanges in Philadelphia, and Route 82 (Manor Road) between Business U.S. 30 (Lincoln Highway) and Butterworth Road in the City of Coatesville and Valley Township in Chester County.
 
Under this project, PennDOT’s contractor will mill and pave I-76 in both directions between the Montgomery Drive and Girard Avenue/U.S. 13 interchanges, as well as pave 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.
 
Once construction begins on Route 82 (Manor Road), overnight or daytime milling and paving operations will also occur, as well as the replacement of guiderail and a deteriorating raised concrete median between Business U.S. 30 (Lincoln Highway) and Butterworth Road. In addition, the Wagontown Road and Route 82 (Manor Road) Intersection will be reconfigured to require vehicles to stop prior to entering Route 82 (Manor Road).
 
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 in fall of 2021.
 
Work on these projects 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 signage and relevant training.
 
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 Urges Caution in Work Zones

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) is urging motorists to drive safely in work zones after three separate work zone intrusions resulted in motorists hitting a PennDOT crash truck.
 
“Even though construction season is winding down in many places, we still have road crews out there,” said PennDOT Secretary Yassmin Gramian. “Please don’t speed, never drive distracted, and always buckle up, especially in work zones.”
 
According to PennDOT data, in 2019 there were 1,754 work zone crashes, resulting in 16 fatalities. Since 1970, 89 PennDOT employees have died in the line of duty.
 
In addition to crash data from police reports, PennDOT monitors work-zone safety with internal reports. As of November 10, there have been 72 reported intrusions in PennDOT work zones. Of those work-zone intrusions, seven resulted in injures to PennDOT employees, 25 caused damage to PennDOT fleet or equipment, and 40 did not result in injury or damage but had the potential to do so.
 
Pennsylvania law states that anyone stopped by law enforcement for violating the posted speed limit by more than 5 mph will face doubled fines. The fine is determined based on the amount the driver is traveling over the speed limit. Governor Tom Wolf signed a law in 2016 that says any driver who causes serious bodily injury within a work zone could face up to $5,000 in fines and a six-month license suspension, and a driver causing a death within a work zone could face up to a $10,000 fine and one-year license suspension. Drivers who don’t turn on their headlights in posted work zones face a $25 fine.
 
Additionally, in an effort to change unsafe driving behaviors in work zones, Pennsylvania’s Automated Work Zone Speed Enforcement began earlier this year. The program uses vehicle-mounted systems to detect and record motorists exceeding posted work zone speed limits by 11 miles per hour or more using electronic speed timing devices. AWZSE systems can be deployed in active work zones, where workers are present, on the turnpike as well as any active work zone on a federal aid highway – this includes higher class roadways like interstates, major arterials, and numbered routes. Registered owners will receive a warning letter for a first offense, a violation notice and $75 fine for a second offense, and a violation notice and $150 fine for third and subsequent offenses. These violations are civil penalties only; no points will be assessed to driver’s licenses.
 
For more information on work zone safety visit, www.PennDOT.gov/Safety.

State Transportation Commission Adopts Updated 12-Year Transportation Program

Action Clears Way for Latest Round of Transportation Improvements across Pennsylvania

 
Harrisburg, PA – The State Transportation Commission (STC) today updated the 12-Year Program. The new plan anticipates $64.8 billion being available over the next 12 years for improvements to roads, bridges, transit systems, airports and railroads.
The 12-Year Program, or TYP, is a multimodal, fiscally-constrained planning tool used to identify and prioritize Pennsylvania’s transportation projects and the funds needed to complete them. State law requires the STC to review and update the 12-Year Program every two years. No capital project can move forward unless it is included in the 12-Year Program.
 
The newly adopted program, which takes effect October 1, anticipates the following funding availability in the first four years of the TYP from federal, state and local sources:

  • $11.4 billion for state highway and bridge projects;
  • $9.4 billion for public transit;
  • $321 million for multimodal projects;
  • $228 million for rail freight; and
  • $138 million for aviation.

“Investments in transportation are critical for keeping our communities connected to the global economy,” said PennDOT Secretary Yassmin Gramian. “While additional investment in our large transportation network is certainly needed, PennDOT takes pride in being a responsible steward of federal, state and local dollars to help improve infrastructure across all modes.”
 
The TYP also highlights some of PennDOT’s major accomplishments over the past two years, such as becoming REAL ID-compliant, as well as impacts to transportation in Pennsylvania because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
 
Four Rural Planning Organizations, 19 Metropolitan Planning Organizations and one independent county partnered with PennDOT in the review and development of the update. Now that the STC has approved the update, it has been submitted to the Federal Highway Administration and the Federal Transit Administration for review and approval. The Federal Highway Administration coordinates with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to review the plan’s conformity with air quality requirements.
 
Public input early in the 12-Year planning process played a key role in identifying investments in the various transportation modes.
 
The State Transportation Commission is chaired by the Secretary of PennDOT and consists of 10 appointed citizens as well as the majority and minority chairs of the state House and Senate Transportation committees.
 
For more information about the TYP, visit www.TalkPATransportation.com.

PennDOT Extends Expiration Dates on Driver Licenses, ID Cards, and Learner’s Permits

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

Effective July 23, expiration dates for driver licenses, photo ID cards, and learner’s permits scheduled to expire from March 16, 2020 through August 31, 2020, have been extended until August 31, 2020. These extensions are in addition to those announced on June 25.

A camera card is considered a driver’s license, so it is covered by the same terms and conditions extending other driver’s license products. Camera cards with expiration dates within this timeframe are also extended through August 31, 2020.

Additionally, limited services are available at some Driver License and Photo License Centers. 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.

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

Chestnut Street Bridge Over the Schuylkill River Closed to All Traffic

The Chestnut Street bridge over the Schuylkill River in Philadelphia is scheduled to close to all vehicular, pedestrian, and bicycling traffic beginning at 8:00 PM Monday, June 8, for the completion of structural steel repairs, redecking and other improvements, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) announced today.

PennDOT closed the 63-year-old eastbound connection between University City and Center City to through-vehicles in August 2019 and began repairs to the north side of the span. The south side of the bridge remained open to pedestrians and bicyclists, and for motorists needing access to the parking lot of the 2400 Chestnut office and residential building while a temporary ramp to the lot was constructed. Once the bridge is fully closed, motorists will access the lot via a temporary ramp from 23rd Street and Chestnut Street.

During the closure, motorists and cyclists heading east from West Philadelphia will be detoured north on either 38th Street, 36th Street or 33rd Street to east on Market Street, then across the river to 23rd Street.

Chestnut Street motorists in the vicinity of 30th Street also may turn left on Schuylkill Avenue to access either eastbound Market Street or John F. Kennedy Boulevard across the river to Center City.

An alternate detour for cyclists will be to take 38th Street or 34th Street south, turn left on Spruce Street, then east on South Street across the river to 22nd Street.

Pedestrians will be detoured to either the Market Street or Walnut Street bridges over the river.

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 bridge are part of PennDOT’s $103.6 million project that also includes rehabilitation of eight other nearby structures, including those carrying Schuylkill Avenue over I-76 between Walnut Street and Chestnut Street, and between Chestnut Street and Market Street. More information is available at www.chestnutstreetbridges.com.

The Chestnut Street Bridge over the Schuylkill River, which carries approximately 18,664 vehicles per day is expected to reopen by late fall. The current bridge was built in 1957, replacing the original iron arch bridge that was built in 1912.