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ITeam: Traffic Change for Trucks Angers Business Owner

The owner of a Scranton business says changes to a busy intersection on Keyser Avenue could cripple his company.
The owner of a Scranton business says an ongoing road project on Keyser Avenue could cripple his company.

The owner of LA Lewis Moving & Storage says PennDOT just made permanent changes to an intersection right near his front door.

The owner of the company says he tried to find out why the changes were made but he didn't get very far so he contacted the I-Team for help.

The changes impact truck traffic at the intersection of Keyser Avenue and Dalton Street in West Scranton. The intersection is a busy one because Dalton Street turns into Luzerne Street and is the gateway for a number of businesses.

David Lewis, owner of LA Lewis Moving & Storge is worried about the future.

"This whole project was supposed to improve the area and for me, it's not going to improve it, it's going to take away," Lewis said.

Signs have just gone up on Keyser Avenue that trucks are no longer allowed to make a right-hand turn onto Dalton Street as they have been able to for decades.

That means big trucks coming off the Pennsylvania Turnpike to Lewis' business and others will have to find a different route.

PennDOT spokesman James May says the change is needed becasue of a 128-degree turn, coupled with new traffic signals and curbs going in.

"What they've (trucks) been doing in the past is either going over into the oncoming lane of the cars that are coming up the hill or they've been cheating here and cutting through this area where we're standing where there is now a new traffic pole and new signal pole going up," PennDOT spokesman James May said.

Lewis says between 20 and 24 trucks at his business alone are impacted by the change everyday.

"PennDOT's thought process was to, oh now, go down to Jackson Street. If you take a trip down Jackson Street, that's going to put the trucks into a residential area with a lot much narrower streets," Lewis said.

"As a general rule, we don't tell the businesses how to get from Point A to Point B," May said.

David Lewis tells the I-Team that PennDOT didn't even notify businesses of the change and he plans to fight it all the way to Harrisburg if needed.

"I've been chasing them for the last three weeks and I'm just not getting satisfaction whatsoever," Lewis said.

PennDOT says the road work along Keyser Avenue has been in the design stages for roughly 15 years and other instances of changes needed may be needed to accomplish the road project.
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