PennDOT using recycled materials to improve rural roads

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MOUNT PLEASANT TOWNSHIP, WAYNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) – PennDOT is renewing its commitment to fixing rural roads across northeastern Pennsylvania.

Just one day after Earth Day, PennDOT announced it is trying to be more environmentally conscious by expanding its “Recycled Asphalt Paving” program, or RAP, for short.

Crews will be using ground up pavement from other road projects, making them useful again for rural roads across the region.

Egypt Road in Mount Pleasant Township got a big makeover Monday.

For people living here, they’ve been waiting years to see their road get resurfaced.

“It gets used a lot because it’s a state road and there’s state game lands down at the bottom during fishing season and hunting season,” Gail Jones of Mount Pleasant Township said.

Gail Jones says the potholes on her road were so bad her neighbors actually collected signatures on a petition and gave it to PennDOT.

All they got were reduced speed limit signs until now.

“We’re people too and we’re glad to see it being done!” Jones said.

The work on Egypt Road is a first for Wayne County.

PennDOT is fixing the road because the agency expanded its “Recycled Asphalt Paving” program.

Near the Wayne County Fairgrounds in Dyberry Township, contractors are re-using blacktop from other road projects and mixing it with oil to create something that can be used on rural roads.

“It’s just smart. It’s making us more efficient and allowing us to do more projects than we’ve been able to do before,” PennDOT Secretary Leslie Richards said.

PennDOT first tested the program locally in Pike County two years ago.

They found it to be successful.

Some of the roads that can now get improvements, like Egypt Road, might not have seen improvements for realistically ten or 20 years without this project.

“When we were rebuilding Interstate 84 we knew we’d be stockpiling this type of asphalt and we were just hoping that we could use it in some way or another,” State Representative Mike Peifer said.

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