After 20 Years, PennDOT Evaluates Problems With the Parkway East

May 13, 2014

Traffic backups are a common occurrence in the Squirrel Hill Tunnel. PennDOT is looking for input on how to improve traffic conditions.
Credit Flickr user daveynin

Negotiating the roads around Pittsburgh isn’t easy. For a long time, one area of contention has been I-376 East.

So the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation is now asking for public feedback on traffic conditions for the route known as the Parkway East. PennDOT District 11 Executive, Dan Cessna said this is the department’s first evaluation for the Parkway East in 20 years.

Cessna pointed out how infrastructure and safety impact Parkway traffic flow on a daily basis.  

“Just this morning I was delayed 15 minutes in the Squirrel Hill Tunnel because a tire fell off of a truck. That’s just something you don’t expect to happen but it happened, and motorists were probably wondering what was going on,” said Cessna.

So how can the department realistically address problems with traffic flow? 

“Right now we only have about $5 million to invest," Cessna explained "So we know we’re only going to get a very small scale improvement. But even a small interchange enhancement can have a dramatic impact on improving safety. And if we can reduce the number of crashes on the Parkway we’re also going to improve mobility.”