One of the most treacherous intersections in Cranberry Township – where state-owned Franklin Road meets Township-owned Peters Road – is about to receive a much-needed traffic signal. Through a cooperative safety improvement arrangement, Cranberry and PennDOT have joined forces in financing a $900,000 project to signalize the intersection which has become increasingly busy and dangerous as traffic in the Township’s eastern corridor has grown. Just since 2005, it has been the scene of 26 accidents in which either someone was injured or the wrecked vehicles had to be towed away.
In April, following nearly a year of preliminary work, PennDOT solicited bids from contractors to build the project according to a design by HRG Engineering; PennDOT is now reviewing the responding bidders’ capabilities. A final award is expected by early June; the work itself would start shortly afterward and be finished this fall.
One of the final pieces of the project will be the installation of signal poles, which are built to order and can take as long as 16 weeks to fabricate and deliver. As a result, a pole order placed in June might not be available to install until October. However the earthwork, paving and utility line movements associated with the project can move forward almost as soon as the contract has been signed.
When complete, the intersection – which will include the widening of a portion of Franklin Road to accommodate a new left-turn lane – will be controlled by camera-activated traffic signals. A “Be Prepared to Stop” sign, which will flash whenever there’s a red light ahead, will also be installed at a point on Franklin where undulating terrain blocks drivers from seeing the approaching intersection.
Traffic flow along both roads will be maintained throughout the construction, but there will be times of day when it will take motorists longer to get by, cautions Township Engineer Jason Kratsas.