September 4, 2015 – The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) today reopened the newly rebuilt, mile-long section of Markley Street (US 202 South) to two-way traffic between Elm Street and Johnson Highway. PennDOT Secretary Leslie S. Richards highlighted the early completion of the $20.8 million improvement project in Norristown and East Norriton Township, Montgomery County because construction was completed one year ahead of schedule.
“We are delighted to complete this major transportation improvement project well ahead of schedule and to reopen Markley Street to two-way traffic for travelers who depend upon this key north-south artery for access through Norristown,” said Richards.
The 80 percent federal, 20 percent state-funded project, which also included the rehabilitation of the historic Main Street Bridge over Stony Creek in Norristown, is the first phase of PennDOT’s two-phase plan to reconstruct and improve Markley Street.
“The new Markley Street will improve travel in Norristown with the addition of a center turn lane and new traffic signals, and the new sidewalks, curbs, utilities, landscaping, and ornamental street lights further enhance the street for the citizens who live and work along it,” Richards added.
Under the first phase of the Markley Street Improvement Project, PennDOT’s contractor initially installed new storm water and sanitary sewers, and relocated gas and water mains on Markley Street from Elm Street to Johnson Highway. Utility companies relocated aerial telecommunications lines as well as aerial and underground electric lines.
PennDOT’s contractor then completely rebuilt the one-mile section of Markley Street to include one northbound and southbound travel lane, plus a center turn lane. New and upgraded traffic signals were installed at four intersections, including the newly signalized crossing with Coolidge Boulevard/Brown Street. The intersection of Markley Street/Swede Road and Johnson Highway in Norristown and East Norriton Township was upgraded to include turn lanes, and Johnson Highway was restriped to add a center turn lane between Markley Street and DeKalb Street.
Accompanying the new traffic signals at Markley Street’s intersections with Harding Boulevard, Fornance Street, Coolidge Boulevard/Brown Street, and Johnson Highway are pedestrian push buttons, pedestrian countdown timers, continental crosswalks, and new curb ramps to enhance pedestrian travel and safety.
In addition, new sidewalks and curbing were added on Markley Street along with recessed parking slots in residential blocks, 39 ornamental street lights, and 16 trees planted in storm filter boxes. A residential parking lot also was built on Harding Boulevard at its intersection with Markley Street.
PennDOT’s contractor will plant additional trees along Markley Street during the fall planting season, starting in mid-October.
Additionally, the improvement project included the installation of Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) components, including a highway camera and travel time reader on Markley Street at the intersections of Main Street and Johnson Highway. A dynamic message sign, highway camera and travel time reader were installed on DeKalb Street at the U.S. 202 split, and a highway camera and travel time at the intersection of Swede Road and U.S. 202.
Construction on the $20,825,701 project began in February 2013 and was scheduled to finish on September 8, 2016. However the contractor, J.D. Eckman of Atglen, Chester County, accelerated the construction schedule by combining several of the planned construction stages, which allowed crews to work concurrently at different locations along Markley Street.
The second and final phase of the Markley Street Improvement Project is in engineering design and is expected to move to construction in early 2017. This phase covers Markley Street from Elm Street to south of Main Street.
For additional project information, visit www.us202-markleystreet.com.
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