Route 29 Sinking In near Hallstead

LIBERTY TOWNSHIP — For drivers who use State Route 29 near the New York state line in Susquehanna County they are used to the sounds of rumble strips.

These strips are slowing drivers down for some bumpy conditions ahead.

“I drive a lot of roads for my job and go through many counties and this spot in the road is the worst I’ve ever seen,” Wade Robinson of Hallstead said.

Robinson is referring to a portion of Route 29, specifically in Liberty Township.

Robinson said it’s always been a trouble spot in the county, but recently he and his wife said it’s become even worse.

Right in the heart of winter.

“You don’t know what your car is going to do depending on what tire hits what bump. So, we try to avoid it as much as we can in the winter time, but it’s frightening when it’s slippery,” Kelly Robinson of Hallstead said.

PennDOT said the problem first started after the flood in 2011.

A project to fix the road wrapped up not too long ago, but the same section of Route 29 got even worse.

PennDOT believes a nearby creek is to blame.

Engineers said the creek has been moving closer to the road over the years and it is eroding spots beneath the road.

Officials believe this is the reason why the road surface is sinking.

“You have to swerve a lot. There’s a lot of potholes and things, it’s pretty bad,” Jordan Christofaro of Montrose said.

“I just try to take it as slow as I can. I maneuver through the potholes to try not to hit as many as I can,” Matt Sobiech of Montrose said.

For people who live in the area, they said they’re upset for a number of reasons.

One reason is because the road is bumpy and is crumbling.

They’re also upset that their taxpayer money is being wasted.

“We expected it to be fixed and you know we wouldn’t have any problems traveling that way so yeah, it’s frustrating and it seems like taxpayer money is being flushed down the holes in the road,” Robinson said.

PennDOT tells Newswatch 16 they are in the process of trying to receive a bid on the project.

They expect that to happen sometime this summer.

Engineers say the project may cost around $4.5 million dollars.

PennDOT says the project will consist of crews relocating the creek to its original location.

Right now they are awaiting for approval from the Department of Environmental Protection so they can make that move.

During the construction phase officials say the road is not expected to be closed.

There will be a one lane closure with temporary traffic signals in place.

The project is expected to start and finish next year, and will be funded by PennDOT and the Federal Highway Administration.

13 comments

  • Mark S. Sherman

    I guess someone didn’t like hearing the truth so my statement of facts was removed apparently since it is no longer on here. Oh well they can continue to live in the dark.

    • Bob Bennett

      Mark:
      I for one was impressed to know that someone actually knew the history of this spot and to find out that the problem goes back to 1936 was very impressive to me. I am now 65 years old and live in NY state. My brother lives right there nexxt to that sorry spot in the road. I want to thank you for historical documentation of this situation, Now if only Penndot will get their heads out of their butts and do the RIGHT thing, and fix it CORRECTLY.

  • bree

    Its not just that spot that is bad. its all of 29 north. from montrose to seven. they spent all last year repaving 29 south and did nothing to that road. even the new york side was fixed. its ruining cars and is putting lives in danger. where’s penndot in all this patching the wholes that will be unpatched in weeks. something has to be done and fast or the state will start getting bills to help pay for damages done to the vehicles that travel and live on that road. its not an option anymore its needs to be fixed and not just the bumps the whole road. and the bumps will be fixed and in 2 weeks they are going to be just like they are now build a bridge and get over it.

  • Lisa Kelley

    This patch has been bad forever. 40 years ago a friend told me there was quicksand under there but reading Mark Shermans comment puts that into context. More than 30 years ago when I still lived in Montrose, I was driving home from Binghamton one night and hit a patch of black ice right there. My car slid backwards all the way down that hill. It should have been properly fixed years ago, glad my tax dollars aren’t paying for PennDots incompetentcy.

  • Bill

    To my knowledge the latest round of subsidence on sections of Rt. 29, Susquehanna County, and the section inside the PA border south of New York Rt. 7A started to subside after the 2006 flood not the flood of 2011. Maybe they only have the date wrong or maybe if they push the date up they can blame the heavier truck traffic do to the exploration of natural gas in the region. Come to think of it, who would be able to pay for the repairs again, the taxpaying public or the gas companies.

  • Bob Bennett

    Bob Bennett
    January 18, 2014 at 10:38 am
    January 18th, 2014
    I am 65 years and graduated from Montrose high school in 1967.
    This spot in Route 29 was bad ,even back then.
    Penn Dot is full of crap to say it started in 2011.
    PennDot should take a lesson from New York state on how they fixed a similar situation on Route 206 near Bainbridge. They dug back into the mountain and put a large, and I mean large culvert pipe under the road, AND DID NOT UPSET THE FLOW OF TRAFFIC WHILE DOING THE PROJECT.
    If Penndot would just use their head and do a similar project in this spot the problem would be fixed forever.
    PENNDOT, PUT IN A DRY BRIDGE OVER THIS SPOT, THE WAY YOU SHOULD HAVE MANY YEARS AGO.

  • Bob Bennett

    January 18th, 2014
    I am 65 years and graduated from Montrose high school in 1967.
    This spot in Route 29 was bad ,even back then.
    Penn Dot is full of crap to say it started in 2011.
    PennDot should take a lesson from New York state on how they fixed a similar situation on Route 206 near Bainbridge. They dug back into the moutain and put a large, and I mean large culvert pipe under the road, AND DID NOT UPSET THE FLOW OF TRAFFIC WHILE DOING THE PROJECT.
    If Penndot would just use their head and do a similar project in this spot the problem would be fixed forever.
    PENNDOT, PUT IN A DRY BRIDGE OVER THIS SPOT, THE WAY YOU SHOULD HAVE MANY YEARS AGO.

  • Woody Wood

    Montrose has the absolute worst roads in this county now… With nothing being done to them because apparently they’re, “not done building new stuff yet” even though the only new “stuff” to go in is the Rite-Aid and the freaking new hospital that you HAVE to drive through the mine-field to get to… When I damage a rim or tire in this borough I’m coming straight for you, Penn-Dot!

    • Woody Wood

      And, another thing. I totally agree with the 2 previous comments. This has been happening for over a decade. They’ve tried “fixing” this at least 5 times now since I’ve been born, and I’m only 31. How many more times are we gong to waste taxpayer time and money on a bullcrap “fix”.
      Last time they even had the army corp. of engineers in and it’s STILL not fixed!@

  • Clyde Harvey

    2011 is not the start of this problem, I have been using this route for 15 years and many attempts have been made to correct it over the years, all unsuccessful. The last effort had the road closed for months and money and time spent was wasted. The contractor and design team whom did the work should shoulder the responsibility of correcting at no cost to the taxpayer. You should also look at the guide rail installation near Snake Creek, again this project has been performed several times,as is evident by the abandon guide rails which have fallen away at the embankment. Using resources to temporarily address a problem is not good use of our states limited resources.

  • Jason Daye

    This spot was bad long before the flood. I’m sure many will agree with that. I’m wondering did the news crew drive north from Montrose? You could do a whole hour segment on the “battlefield” of 29 north of Montrose. The whole road is crap. We were told crews were out filling holes, but I drive it everyday and have not seen any patch in any of the MOON craters. Someone swerving to miss the pits is sure to get in an accident soon enough. Just hope its not me. Good luck on this road drivers!!!

    • Amy

      I think they need to investigate a little more before they report. I am 42 and it has been bad my whole life, my mother is 61 and it has been bad her whole life & my grandfather is 85 and lived here his whole life in which that spot was bad then and there was talk of putting a bridge across that spot. When they “fixed” it we all new it was crap and a waste of money because it was NOT going to fix it.

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