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Harrisburg area Cumberland, Dauphin, and Perry Counties
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Old 06-02-2020, 11:35 AM
Location: western NY
1,607 posts, read 416,031 times
Reputation: 2535


My wife and I used to head south, to the Carolinas on vacation, and the Route 15, Route 147 corridor was our pathway to get there, for a number of years. However, we hadn't gone south in quite a while, so we were unaware of the recent plans for Route 147.

Last year, we had to travel to Arlington, VA, and I was somewhat curious about the upgrades that had been done to Route 15 over the years, since the last time we had been on it (2000-2001), so instead of using Routes I180 and 147 between Williamsport and Northumberland, we stayed on Route 15. We did see a couple of the new bridge structures in place, along the banks of the Susquehanna river, so when we returned home, I looked up what was going on.

I read the story of the new span that will cross the river, but there were just 2-3 pictures of the "in process" bridge, and they were taken in late 2018-early 2019. It's been over a year since we drove through there, and I'm sure that more progress has been made. However, being curious, I've been looking for current pictures that show the progress, but I can't seem to be able to find any.

Anybody know where I might look??
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Old 06-02-2020, 01:17 PM
Location: Philadelphia
273 posts, read 198,942 times
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I’m a native of Williamsport and have spent seemingly a lifetime passing though that area. I haven’t driven through there since the winter (when construction work was idle), so I’m not sure whether any meaningful activity had resumed in the early spring prior to the COVID-19 shutdowns or has resumed since. (That area of the state is currently in the intermediate “yellow” phase of reopening but may be moved into “green” in a few weeks.)

You’ll have a lot easier time finding information about the project if you know its official name: the Central Susquehanna Valley Transportation project (CSVT—also frequently referred to as the Central Susquehanna Valley Thruway). The project has a website at csvt.com, but it hasn’t been updated since last summer.

As I last saw it, the bridge is mostly finished—all support structures in are place from end to end, and a little less than half of the concrete driving surface has been poured. If you simply search “CSVT” on YouTube, you’ll find countless drone flyover videos showing the status of the project at various points. This video from a couple of weeks ago shows the project in about the same state that I remember it.

Ultimately, the bridge will serve to tie the US 15, PA 147, and I-180 corridors together, essentially serving as an all-freeway replacement for US 15 between Selinsgrove and Williamsport for long-distance traffic. The northern section of the CSVT project consists of the Susquehanna River Bridge and its connections to the existing PA 147 freeway at Chillisquaque and US 15 south of Winfield. The northern section is expected to be complete and open to traffic in 2022.

The southern section of the project is the continuation of the CSVT freeway from Winfield southward around Shamokin Dam and finally tying into the stub end of the existing US 11-15 freeway near the Susquehanna Valley Mall. The southern section will arguably have the greater impact on traffic congestion by taking through traffic off the busy commercial strip through Hummels Wharf and Shamokin Dam. The southern section has been delayed due to the discovery of some waste ash basins from a local power plant that required a partial re-routing, and it is slated for completion in 2027.
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Old 06-02-2020, 05:38 PM
Location: western NY
1,607 posts, read 416,031 times
Reputation: 2535
"briantroutman', thanks for the info. I'm interested in this because Route 15 has been a small part of my life for about 60 years. My father was born in Wilkes Barre, but left there as a youngster, when his father accepted a job transfer that took the family to central NJ, although some of the family remained in Wilkes Barre.

Years later, my father's employer transferred him to their western NY location, and we went back to Wilkes Barre, to visit them a couple of times. Today, I81 would be the way to get there, but before that, back in the late 50s-early 60s, we headed south out of Rochester, on Route 15, and then somehow or other, worked our way east/southeast, and got to Wilkes Barre. Back then, even though Route 15 was a primary north/south highway, I swear that it wasn't much wider than my present day driveway in front of my house!!

One of my buddies bought a condo unit in Myrtle Beach, SC, and along with using it himself, he also rented it to friends and family. I first went to Myrtle Beach in 1980, and Route 15 was the way I went through PA. The roadway was somewhat wider than it was back in the 50s, but you still hit all the small towns along the way. I remember some of the incremental improvements between then, and 2000, the last year I went south, until I went to Virginia, last year. I must say, it was a pleasant surprise at how much the road had been improved.

Unfortunately, the new road had bypassed 'Angie's Truckstop', in Duncannon. We used to stop for gas and lunch, there, on our way home. My wife used to be fascinated by the "old time diner" atmosphere, as well as the telephones at each table.........
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