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Road work, then 'Frankenstorm'?

Written by Jon Schmitz on .

PennDOT usually tacks the words “weather permitting” onto its road work advisories. From the looks of things, weather might not permit much this weekend or into next week. Meteorologists are closely watching Hurricane Sandy, which is expected to move up the East Coast.

In one scenario, it merges with a cold system moving in from the northwest to create a monster storm with flooding rains and damaging winds over much of the Northeast and mid-Atlantic, including, get this, possible wet snow in the higher elevations of the Appalachians. Weather forecasters, who love to scare the dickens out of people, are talking about “millions” of downed trees and $1 billion in damage if the worst case plays out.

On the other hand, the hurricane might move out to sea and will get away with brisk wind and gloom. Either way, drink in the Thursday and Friday weather. You knew it couldn’t last.

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Pittsburgh police nailed quite a few careless and reckless drivers who were speeding in school zones or passing stopped school buses in a daylong operation on Wednesday. Here’s the body count from spokeswoman Diane Richard:

Passing or overtaking a school sus: 7 traffic stops, 7 citations

Speeding in a school zone: 117 stops, 117 citations

Other vehicle code violations: 15 stops, 32 citations

Grand total: 138 traffic stops, 155 citations, 6 vehicles towed

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And now, the “weather permitting” road work. Please check earlier posts for additional advisories affecting traffic in the coming days.

Traffic on the Portal Bridge going from the Fort Duquesne Bridge to the Fort Pitt Bridge in Downtown Pittsburgh will be restricted to a single lane from 10 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. Sunday. The restriction may be eased for traffic leaving the Pitt game. No lanes will close in the opposite direction.

Several lane restrictions are planned on the Parkway East for pavement repair at bridges.

An inbound lane will close at Wilkinsburg from 8 p.m. Thursday to 5 a.m. Friday and from 9 p.m. Friday to 10 a.m. Saturday; an outbound lane will close at Edgewood-Swissvale from 10 p.m. Friday to 10 a.m. Saturday. An inbound lane will close at Wilkinsburg from 9 p.m. Saturday to 9 a.m. Sunday; an outbound lane at Edgewood-Swissvale will close from 10 p.m. Saturday to 10 a.m. Sunday. On the outbound side at Wilkinsburg, one lane will close from 7 p.m. Saturday to 2 p.m. Sunday and two of the three lanes will close from 10 p.m. Saturday to 10 a.m. Sunday.

The “bathtub” section of the inbound-westbound Parkway East will close from 9 p.m. Thursday to 5 a.m. Friday and during the same hours Monday through Friday next week. All inbound traffic has to exit at Grant Street.

The ramp from northbound Interstate 579-Crosstown Boulevard to Bigelow Boulevard will close from 8 p.m. Friday through 6 a.m. Monday. This work was planned last weekend but postponed. The detour is via the Centre Avenue-Consol Energy Center exit and Washington Place.

Greentree Road also will close this weekend in the area of the bridge over Chartiers Creek in Scott. The details of this closure are a bit different than the last time it was shut down for the weekend.

Greentree Road and Old Washington Pike will be closed from 8 p.m. Friday through 6 a.m. Monday. Access to Old Washington Pike from Route 50 will remain open this weekend. But traffic on Old Washington Pike will not be able to access Greentree Road or Route 50. In addition, traffic on westbound Greentree will not be able to access Old Washington Pike. Got it?

Banksville Road construction continues on an abbreviated schedule this weekend. One lane will close in both directions between the Parkway West and Wenzell Avenue from 8 p.m. Friday through approximately 6 a.m. Saturday. 

Pavement sealing will cause temporary lane closures on Route 286, the Golden Mile Highway, between Route 22 in Monroeville and Hialeah Drive in Plum from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. weekdays through Nov. 1.

Pavement sealing also will occur on Route 48 between Route 130 in Monroeville and Route 30 in North Versailles, and between the Olympia Shopping Center in Versailles and Route 51 in Elizabeth Township. Lane closures are possible from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in both directions through Oct. 31.

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