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Chester County Press

Improvements planned for New Garden intersection

08/19/2014 05:17PM ● By Acl

James E. Maloney of the engineering firm of Johnson, Mirmiran & Thompson gives a presentation that spell out planned improvements to the Newark Road-Route 41 intersection, at the New Garden Township Board of Supervisors meeting on Aug. 19.

By Richard L. Gaw

Staff Writer

Ask any resident of New Garden Township to list the most troublesome intersection in the township, and chances are that most will place the corner of Gap Newport Pike and Newark Road at the top of that list. Within the next two years, these residents will be receiving a long-awaited gift, in the form of improvements to that nagging tangle of roads.

Representatives from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) and a Philadelphia-based engineering firm gave a presentation at the New Garden Board of Supervisors on Aug. 18 that spelled out plans for a transportation improvement project that will enhance the efficiency of the Newark Road-Route 41 intersection by widening shoulder lanes, installing traffic-calming islands and pedestrian walkways and creating turn lanes. 

Using a color-coated image of the planned enhancements as a guide during his presentation, James E. Maloney, P.E., of the Philadelphia-based engineering firm of Johnson, Mirmiran & Thompson, said that the proposed plan will include removing right turn lanes from the intersection, and adding left turn lanes in both directions on Newark Road, as well as installing new traffic signal equipment.

“I'm sure you can tell us plenty that it's currently not working well, and it's not projected to get any better in the future, so the project is to improve the operational aspects of the intersection,” Maloney said of the federally-funded project. 

In its final configuration, Maloney said that Newark Road will have a shared through/right turn lane with a separate turn lane in both directions onto Route 41. 

The proposed design also calls for the installation of new pedestrian crosswalks across the western portion of Route 41, as well as the construction of islands, which will be installed on the northwest and southeast quadrants of the intersection.

“Our concerns were that if that if we didn't have some islands, that it would become a quick bypass for vehicles as they traverse through the intersection, Maloney said. “It does allow a place for pedestrians  to stop and have a refuge if they can't cross the road in one shot.” 

Guide rails will be replaced on the northeast corner of the intersection, and curbing will be replaced at each corner of the intersection, except at the southeast corner. Maloney said that the project also calls for stormwater management swales to be built along Newark Road, in the southeast and northwest quadrants of the intersection. During construction, one travel lane will be open in each direction of Newark Road.

Maloney said that the proposed time line for the project expects to have preliminary design completed by the fall, final design to be completed in a year- to a year-and-a-half, and construction to begin soon afterward.