Interstate 81 South Down to One Lane as Roadwork Begins

LACKAWANNA COUNTY -- Monday, May 1, is the beginning of what could be a long month for drivers in part of our area.

One of the busiest highways in our area is due for an upgrade.

PennDOT says it's trying to cram a summer's worth of work into three weeks, and this is what it means if you use Interstate 81 in Luzerne and Lackawanna Counties.

The stretch of highway involved is between the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport exit in Avoca and Drinker Street in Dunmore.

Crews will be patching potholes, sealing cracks, and making bridge repairs.

This week, they will be working on the southbound first. Then, northbound for the next two weeks.

The interstate will be down to one lane for three miles at a time. Officials say to look for backups. Around 80,000 vehicles use this part of Interstate 81 every day.

"It'll be a good difference because they need to fix these roads for a better commute to places and for the car," said Bobby Martinez of Scranton. "It does a lot of damages, these potholes. They really damage the cars."

The work is scheduled weekdays from 7:30 in the morning to 3:30 in the afternoon.

If there's a rainy day, Saturdays will be added as a makeup day.

The advice from PennDOT: be patient, and use the Pennsylvania Turnpike to work your way around the construction.

Click here for the latest traffic conditions.

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