Thruway Project Postponed…Again

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Plans for a new highway in part of Snyder County, which has been talked about for years, appears to be a casualty of the budget passed by Pennsylvania's lawmakers this week.

The Central Susquehanna Valley Thruway in Snyder County has been in the works for about 40 years. It aims to reduce traffic and improve safety along routes 11 and 15 near Selinsgrove.

"I think the thruway would be a good idea just to get through the traffic in a few minutes as opposed to 20 with all the lights," Toby Gearhart said.

Earlier this year, state lawmakers gathered in Shamokin Dam to announce funding for the thruway, saying if Governor Corbett's transportation bill passes, the new roadway would finally be built.

But now, the future of the Central Susquehanna Valley Thruway is in jeopardy...again. Over the weekend, state law makers failed to pass the transportation bill, meaning no money for the thruway.

According to Penndot, the project costs a total of $615 million. To date, about $40 million has been invested in the project, but Penndot says without the additional funding, the road stops right here.

"I don't think the bypass is ever going to pass. I'm 73 years old and they've talked about it for so many years and I just don't think it's ever going to come," Gary Charles said.

Many people who live in Snyder County say they are not surprised the project is postponed. Linda Yankoskie drives on Routes 11 and 15 often, and is not happy with the current state of the road.

"Not good. It's dangerous because there's too many people on it. We need the bypass to cut down on the heavy traffic for us," Yankoskie said.

Senator John Gordner announced plans for funding of the thruway in April. Today he said, "The issue is not dead. We remain fully committed to getting this bill passed in the fall."