NANTICOKE, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) – If you’ve driven through Nanticoke within the last three years, you’ve probably noticed many detours, especially on Middle Road.
That’s because PennDot’s ‘The South Valley Parkway Project’ is underway. James May, PennDOT’s Regional Press Director says the project will help keep traffic off of Middle Road.
“We had a situation where a lot of college students especially, are going back to Luzerne County Community College, using a road that is not designed for that much traffic,” May said.
The project will divert traffic from Middle Road onto a brand new roadway which will include six roundabouts. The project began in 2016 and will cost an estimated total of $59 million.
“When we designed this road, we did so with six roundabouts because that’s a good way to get traffic in and out. It’s an efficient way to keep traffic moving,” May said.
The sixth and final roundabout will be built at Middle Road and Prospect Street, which are currently closed due to construction – which began Tuesday. While many people have mixed opinions on roundabouts, May says there are advantages to using them over traditional traffic lights. Most notably the fact that they are safer.
“If you’re in a crash at a traditional intersection such as a stop sign or a traffic light, there’s a good chance if you get t-boned that you could lose your life. In a roundabout, you might lose your mirror, because you’re coming in and you get that side swipe if at all,” May said.
The final roundabout is expected to be finished on Halloween, October 31.