The past several months, the Lackawanna/Luzerne MPO researched, utilized GIS, gathered data and collected traffic counts all in support of their critical corridor designation to PennDOT- corridors that provide critical access to freight movement and truck performance within the MPO. The suggested corridors are to provide connectivity to the Primary Highway Freight System (PHFS). The Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act requires the establishment of a National Highway Freight Network (NHFN). Within the NHFN are four subdivisions: Primary Highway Freight System (PHFS), Non-Primary Highway Freight System Interstates, Critical Urban Freight Corridors (CUFCs), and Critical Rural Freight Corridors (CRFCs). LLTS MPO’s focus was to compile a list of corridors that fall into CUFC & CRFC. The Commonwealth was allotted a total of 141.26 miles for urban designation and 282.53 for rural designation of critical corridors. For selection of these corridors, there were four categories that each segment was to be classified: urban state, urban local, rural state, and rural local; as well as meeting all specified criteria highlighting truck performance and freight movement under rural standards or urban standards- whichever category the corridors belonged. LLTS MPO compiled their list of suggested corridors that are vital to freight movement and play a key role is connecting trucks to the interstate system. The following are the top two ranked corridors from the 4 categories:
• Urban State:
1. Casey Highway from Dunmore to Jessup- 4.99 mi.
2. State Route 315 from I-81 North on-ramp to I-81 South in Pittston and Jenkins Township- 2.40 mi.
• Urban Local:
1. Keystone Avenue, Jenkins Township from SR 315 to CenterPoint Boulevard- 0.35 mi.
2. CenterPoint Boulevard, Jenkins Township from Keystone Avenue to Research Drive- 1.48 mi.
• Rural State:
1. SR 924 from county line to I-81- 3.78 mi.
2. Casey Highway from Jessup to Carbondale- 10.54 mi.
• Rural Local:
1. Commerce Drive, Hazle Township from beginning of roadway to SR 924- 0.85 mi.
2. Maplewood Drive, Hazle Township from end of roadway to SR 924- .90 mi.
As a total for submission, LLTS MPO requested 23 segments at 50.39 miles for urban state, 21 segments at 18.12 miles for urban local, 5 segments at 18.25 miles for rural state, and 7 segments at 5.66 miles for rural local segments. Again, the state was allotted a total of 141.26 miles for urban and 282.53 for rural designations shared across the Commonwealth. Our suggested corridors show the need that we have within our region, and this could potentially open doors for funding opportunities by being designated as critical corridors to the National Highway Freight Network.
– Dan Butch