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MON/FAYETTE PLANS UNDERWAY FOR ROUTE 51 TO PITTSBURGH SECTION

 PITTSBURGH, March 16 /PRNewswire/ -- Officials from the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission and the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation are working closely with the staff of Southwestern Pennsylvania Regional Planning Commission (SPRPC) and other local officials to arrive at the best solutions for the complex transportation issues in the section of the Mon/Fayette Transportation Project from State Route 51 to Pittsburgh, it was announced today.
 The work group will identify project options, project cost estimates, public attitudes and environmental concerns.
 SPRPC, the official metropolitan planning organization for the six-county Greater Pittsburgh area, has brought together a group of the region's key government officials, business leaders, civic leaders and transportation agencies, who meet regularly to formulate a comprehensive long-range transportation plan.
 This section of the Mon/Fayette Transportation Project is different from the other sections south of State Route 51. Some different characteristics of the northern section include: higher future traffic projections, densely developed surroundings and the presence of transit options in the area.
 The term "intermodal" will be referred to often during the development of alternatives. Intermodal means that travelers will have the opportunity to transfer between different means of transportation such as highways to bus or light rail. In addition to the highway options, other possible means of transportation include high occupancy vehicle lanes, bus lanes and even bicycle lanes.
 As part of the transportation project development process, an extensive public involvement program is being planned. Citizens will have the opportunity to assist in developing the transportation system of the future. They will have a broad range of intermodal alternatives to consider.
 The consideration of such a wide variety of alternatives is mandated by the federal government in the 1991 Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act, knows as ISTEA. ISTEA requires that all transportation programs and projects study a number of intermodal transportation options to address air quality issues and provide the most efficient means of moving people and goods in the region. In this case, the transportation agencies will be working in conjunction with SPRPC in the development of their long-range transportation plan as required by ISTEA.
 When the best intermodal options are identified, the Turnpike Commission will continue with the preparation of the Environmental Impact Statement.
 -0- 3/16/93
 /CONTACT: Thomas A. Fox of the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission, 412-271-7191/


CO: Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission ST: Pennsylvania IN: TRN SU:

KC-CD -- PG008 -- 6640 03/16/93 14:58 EST
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Date:Mar 16, 1993
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