In building the second tube, the former South Pennsylvania Railroad tunnel was considered, but was again rejected as it was in too poor condition. Each alternative is being evaluated with regards to environmental impact, engineering criteria, cost and public and agency input. The pavement started crumbling and trees grew in the median, with vandals and nature taking over the tunnels. Nobody had ever seen a road like this before, except at the General Motors Futurama exhibit at the 1939 New York Worlds Fair. At 6,070-feet-long the Allegheny Mountain Tunnel is the longest of the five remaining tunnels on the turnpike. The Sideling Hill Tunnel's original plans date back to the year 1881, when surveying for the South Pennsylvania Railroad began. The section of the turnpike wa… Work on boring the second tube at Allegheny Mountain Tunnel also began on September 6, 1962. The Pennsylvania Turnpike alerts motorists approaching the Kittatinny and Blue Mountain tunnels of traffic shifts slated to begin at 8:30 a.m. on Dec. 8 until 4:30 p.m., and at again at 8:30 a.m. on Dec. 9 through 4:30 p.m. In Partnership with Information Logistics The commission began studies that year on how to resolve the traffic jams at the Laurel Hill and Allegheny Mountain tunnels; studies for the other tunnels followed. As traffic volumes increased over the years, the merging of slower moving trucks from the climbing lane with faster moving vehicles from the wo lanes that pass through the westbound tunnel became problematic and traffic congestion persisted. The blast, which was caused by dynamite, claimed the lives of three people, including O'Brie… I doubt it. Initially ten tunnels were partially dug through the mountains of central Pennsylvania before the project was abandoned in 1885. A bypass around the tunnels and up over the mountains was opened in 1968. Abandoned Pennsylvania Turnpike (Nicknamed: the Bike Pike)is the common name of a 13 mile (21 km) stretch of the Pennsylvania Turnpike that was bypassed in 1968 when a modern stretch opened to ease traffic congestion. The Turnpike Commission is considering six … Bottlenecks at these points caused hours-long delays. The turnpike commission continued to maintain the tunnels for a few years, but eventually abandoned them. Design features for the new road were: The turnpike was opened in 1940, and because of these seven tunnels, it quickly became known as the “Tunnel Highway.” Traffic had become incredibly heavy by the late 1950s. At the same time, the original tunnel was completely refurbished and modernized to carry westbound traffic. Information below from PA Turnpike exhibit at the State Museum in Harrisburg. The construction of the bypass of the Rays Hill and Sideling Hill tunnels involved building a cut across both Rays Hill and Sideling Hill. Nearly 50 years later in 1937, to make use of seven of the partially dug tunnels, the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission turned the tunnels into a highway. In 1959, four Senators urged for state officials to work with the turnpike commission to study ways to improve the traffic jams at the tunnels. Welcome sign greets travelers entering the PA Turnpike from the Breezewood Exit, at mile marker 161. See more ideas about pennsylvania turnpike, abandoned, interstate highway. This new tunnel was constructed to carry two lanes of traffic in the eastbound direction. The Laurel Hill tunnel was bypassed because traffic would be relieved faster and less expensively than it would by boring another tunnel. By the 1950s, traffic jams formed at the tunnels, especially during the summer. The solution? $21 million dollars was set aside to expand the Allegheny Mountain Tunnel and create a four lane bypass at Laurel Hill. Photo taken November 1, 2019. Following the re-initiation of the project, the project needs were re-evaluated, alternatives were added to the south of the existing tunnel, and environmental studies were conducted. The bypass of the two tunnels would have a 36-foot (11 m) wide median with a steel barrier in the middle. On July 6, 1885, a blast occurred at the end of the Sideling Hill Tunnel. A bypass was built, and by the early 1970’s, a 13.1 mile section of road, including three tunnels, was abandoned. Read more about this topic:  Pennsylvania Turnpike, History, “The only way to find out anything about what kinds of lives people led in any given period is to tunnel into their records and to let them speak for themselves.”—John Dos Passos (1896–1970), Pennsylvania Turnpike/interstate 95 Interchange Project. The Laurel Hill Tunnel was bypassed by way of a deep cut to the north of the tunnel; it would feature a wide median, truck climbing lanes, and a 145-foot (44 m) deep cut into the mountain. They include the Brown Cut Alternative, Brown Tunnel Alternative, Yellow Cut Alternative, and Yellow Tunnel Alternative located north of the existing tunnel and the Gray Cut Alternative and Gray Tunnel Alternative located south of the existing tunnel. A bypass of these two tunnels was considered in the 1930s, but at the time was determined to be too expensive. Groundbreaking for the new alignment took place on September 6, 1962. After two decades, a plan to replace the Pennsylvania Turnpike's longest tunnels is back on the table. The turnpike commission announced plans to build a second bore at the Allegheny Mountain Tunnel along with a four-lane bypass of the Laurel Hill Tunnel in 1960. In response to the increasing traffic congestion in this area, the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission added a third westbound lane between New Baltimore and the eastern portal of the Allegheny tunnel with the right lane being designated as a truck climbing lane. Six alternatives are currently being evaluated. The abandoned stretch deteriorated, with signs and guardrails removed. In August of that year, $21 million in bonds were sold to finance the two projects. The turnpike commission sold $77.5 million in bonds in January 1966 to finance this project. Instead, passenger vehicles traveling at similar speeds have to merge right from the left lane. Three of the Pennsylvania Turnpike’s original seven tunnels were victims of bypass. Pennsylvania toll roads, tunnels and bridges. The parallel tubes at these three tunnels would open on the same day as the bypass of the Rays Hill and Sideling Hill tunnels;the original tubes were subsequently remodeled. Work on the new tube at the Tuscarora Mountain Tunnel began on April 11, 1966 while construction began at the Kittatinny and Blue Mountain tunnels a week later. Unfortunately, there was a section that was unable to be widened due to issues at the Rays Hill Tunnel and Sideling Hill Tunnel. In building the cut across Rays Hill, a portion of US 30 had to be realigned. In 1968, the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission sat down over coffee and donuts to figure out how to improve traffic flow through the tunnels, all of which were at that time single lane tunnels. The project was then placed on hold in 2001. Two of them, Rays Hill Tunnel and Sideling Hill Tunnel, are on this deserted part. Pennsylvania Turnpike: Extends east-west across the entire length of Pennsylvania from the Ohio state line in the west to the Delaware River Toll Bridge in Bucks County, PA in the east. The Laurel Hill tunnel was bypassed because traffic would be relieved faster and less expensively than it would by boring another tunnel. In this case, the Sideling Hill Tunnel and Rays Hill Tunnel were bypassed, as was one of the Turnpike's travel plazas. A study in the early 1960s had concluded that a bypass would be the best option to handle traffic at Rays Hill and Sideling Hill. The Abandoned Pennsylvania Turnpike is the common name of a 13-mile (21 km) stretch of the Pennsylvania Turnpike that was bypassed in 1968 when a modern stretch opened to ease traffic congestion in the tunnels. The portals of the new tunnels were designed to resemble the original tunnels. In fact, Bedford County and the ownership of the area are still working things out for possible grant money and upgrades. In this case, the Sideling Hill Tunnel and Rays Hill Tunnel were bypassed, as was one of the Turnpike's travel plazas. The tunnels of Somerset County. In the late 1960s, traffic congestion again became an issue at the westbound approach to the eastern portal of the tunnel. The reasoning behind the bypass was to reduce traffic congestion at the tunnels. E-ZPass Customer Service Center - 877.736.6727 | Turnpike Customer Assistance Center - 800.331.3414 (Outside U.S., please call 717-831-7601) ©2020 The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission. In this case, the Sideling Hill Tunnel and Rays Hill Tunnel were bypassed, as was one of the Turnpike's travel plazas. ©2015 The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission, Major PA Turnpike Design & Construction Projects, System Linkage and Continuity (Diversion of Hazardous Material Haulers). The Allegheny Tunnel is located in Allegheny and Stonycreek Townships, Somerset County along the Pennsylvania Turnpike (I-70/76), a limited access highway, approximately 13 miles East of Exist 110 (Somerset, PA) and 23 miles West of Exit 146 (Bedford, PA). The cut over Sideling Hill passes over the Sideling Hill Tunnel. Meanwhile, studies concluded that a parallel tunnel was the most economical option at the Tuscarora, Kittatinny, and Blue Mountain tunnels. In addition, in 1987 and 1988 both tunnels underwent major rehabilitation. The approximate center of the project area is located at Latitude 39 57' 47.3" North and Longitude -78^ 51' 02.8" West. The Allegheny Tunnel Transportation Project was initiated by the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission (PTC) in 1996 as a result of increasing concerns regarding: Frequency and severity of accidents in the vicinity of the tunnel, Physical and structural conditions of the tunnel, Rerouting of hazardous materials, which are prohibited in the tunnels, onto alternate routes. The Sideling Hill Tunnel was built before December 1884 by John O'Brien, an engineer from Rhinebeck, New York. In fact, those tunnels, a source of awe for turnpike admirers in 1940, are now by far the creepiest part of the abandoned stretch. The turnpike commission, however, still performed some maintenance on the abandoned stretch and used it for testing pavement marking equipment. In Partnership with Information Logistics On Friday, PennLive published the story of the Allegheny Mountain tunnels on the Pennsylvania Turnpike and the commission's ongoing study of how to bypass them.. The traffic jams didn’t go unnoticed, and the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission stepped in to assess the congestion. Simply stated, the Laurel Hill right-of-way that was bypassed, including the old tunnel, is less than three miles in length. The bypass is located just east of the heavily congested Breezewood interchange for Interstate 70 (I-70) eastbound at what is now I-76exit 161. The Abandoned Pennsylvania Turnpike is the common name of a 13-mile (21 km) stretch of the Pennsylvania Turnpike that was bypassed in 1968 when a modern stretch opened to ease traffic congestion in the tunnels. In 1965, the turnpike commission announced plans to build second tubes at the Tuscarora, Kittatinny, and Blue Mountain tunnels while a 13.5-mile (21.7 km) bypass of the Rays Hill and Sideling Hill tunnels would be built. The original Allegheny Tunnel was a one-tunnel, two-lane facility that needed to accommodate four-lanes of traffic. 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