Do you have travel plans that will take you north or south of the Lehigh Valley in early September?
If you’re planning to drive the Pennsylvania Turnpike’s Northeast Extension the weekend of Sept. 6-9, you should be aware that the section of the highway between the Lehigh Valley (Allentown) and Mahoning Valley (Lehighton) exits will be closed in both directions for a bridge replacement project.
Also known as I-476, Northeast Extension traffic will be detoured between 9 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 6 and 4 a.m. on Monday, Sept. 9, according to a news release from project contractor J.D. Eckman of Atglen, Pa.
The detour is for the replacement of a bridge across I-476 at mile marker 58.88 in South Whitehall Township, Lehigh County.
In addition to the closure of the turnpike, Rt. 309 will be closed between Chapmans Road and Snowdrift Road for the bridge replacement project from 7 p.m. Friday until 6 a.m. Monday, according to the news release, which stated that construction will be taking place “around the clock until the roadway can be reopened to vehicular traffic.”
Emergency vehicle traffic will also be restricted between mile markers 56 and 74 on the Northeast Extension that weekend, with “emergency vehicles…not permitted to access the turnpike…without implicit permission of the Turnpike Traffic Incident Management Coordinator Todd Leiss,” J.D. Eckman announced.
Through traffic will be detoured onto Rt. 22, Rt. 33 and I-80, or in the case of local traffic via Rt. 209 to Rt. 33 (north or south), according to maps prepared for the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission that were shared by the contractor along with the news release.
In the event of inclement weather or unforeseen conditions that would affect the project, the backup dates for the closure are for the following weekend, from 9 p.m. Friday, Sept. 13 through 4 a.m. Monday, Sept. 16.
Motorists can check conditions on more than 40,000 miles of roadway by visiting 511PA.com, which provides traffic delay warnings, weather forecasts, traffic speed information and access to more than 950 traffic cameras.
511PA is also available through an app for iPhone and Android devices, by calling 5-1-1 or by following regional Twitter alerts accessible on the 511PA website.
Follow regional PennDOT information on Twitter at www.twitter.com/511PAAllentown