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PennDOT Plans to Remove Traffic Split on I-81 North

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PITTSTON TOWNSHIP -- Another change is coming to the traffic pattern along one of the busiest stretches of Interstate 81 in Luzerne County.

For nearly a year and a half, drivers have dealt with traffic split into two separate lanes on I-81 near Pittston.

PennDOT says that split is expected to go away and there won't be any more in this construction project.

We found drivers happy about that but anxious for all the work in that area to be done.

A trip north on Interstate 81 near the Pittston exit has meant picking a lane. For a year and a half now, traffic split into two separate chutes.

This is the second split like this used in construction in the Pittston area. It keeps two lanes of traffic open while bridges are replaced.

"It is very confusing, especially when you're driving a big truck like this. You have people pulling in front of you, trying to cut you off," said truck driver Tom Cochrane.

Cochrane from Syracuse, New York comes through this stretch often. He and local drivers are glad hearing PennDOT's announcement that crews are expected to remove this last split Monday night, and that no others are planned for this project.

"I think just going near it, it's just aggravating and frustrating, so I stay away from it as much as possible," said Angela Ceccoli of West Pittston.

While PennDOT says the split lanes on the interstate will be done, the whole project isn't done yet. Drivers will need a little more patience until the end of the year.

"I feel like it's always a disaster," said Ashley Colarusso. "I take 81 to Mountain Top and the lane changes are just crazy."

While Colarusso is happy the splits are supposed to be done, she has grown tired of all the lane changes. For her and many others, this project has been a long haul.

"Honestly, I feel like this area is just full of construction and I'll be so happy when it's done with."

PennDOT says the plan is to remove the traffic split overnight Monday. Tuesday morning, drivers should find the two traffic lanes shifted to the right of I-81 north.

All these lane shifts and all of the bridge replacement work is expected to be done by the end of this year.

3 comments

  • Wakemeupwhenitends

    So far we have determined that the drivers of Northeast Pennsylvania can not navigate a circle near the airport and now a straight line is an overload to our minimal intelligence.

    My God do these people who allow themselves to be quoted ever read these articles and wonder how DUMB they sound…

  • bobby the big rigger

    Omg people, is 81 really that difficult for you to travel? Slow down, get off your phone, read the signs and pay attention. If you can’t pull that off, cut up your driver’s license. 81 is one of the easiest highway systems to navigate whether there’s construction or not. Go take a ride around Atlanta, Dallas, or Chicago if you want to see a real mess. Or better yet, maybe you shouldn’t.

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