Written By Theresa Katalinas
Horsham, Upper Moreland and Upper Dublin officials are backing a study that, once carried out, could help shape future design of existing Pennsylvania Turnpike interchanges and the addition of others in the area.
So far, Horsham and Upper Dublin elected officials have committed $10,000 per municipality to cover the estimated $30,000 study to be carried out by Philadelphia-based civil engineering firm Boles Smyth Associates Inc. The Upper Moreland Commissioners are expected to ok its $10,000 share at its Monday night meeting.
The study, which Horsham Township Manager Bill Walker told Patch will take about 90 days to complete, is the first step in a multi-million dollar massive turnpike improvement projectaimed at redeveloping office parks and interchanges between Valley Forge and Willow Grove.
The firm will look at concepts for revamping the Fort Washington interchange and modernizing the Willow Grove interchange, according to Walker. Other conceptual possibilities involve adding ramps at Welsh Road on the border of Horsham, Upper Dublin and Upper Moreland, as well as on Route 263, he said.
The study would “look at everything” and “all possible concepts,” Walker said.
From the initial review, Walker said “preferred concepts” would be developed and design cost estimates would be provided.
“This work is more of a conceptual engineering study,” Walker said. “This is sort of the beginning of the process.”
The study’s outcome is what’s needed to “get yourself in line” for funding, Walker said.
Leo Bagley, Montgomery County Planning Commission assistant director, said previously that the long-term project would be funded by a combination of PennDOT, Pennsylvania Turnpike and county transportation monies.
Walker stressed that the interchanges would not be improved and added overnight.
It could take “20 years until something is maybe constructed,” he said. “We hope it’s not that long.”