Although the state government’s deadline has passed, people still can have a say on improvements needed on U.S. Route 219.

It’s all part of building a case for a better accessible and safer highway that Continental 1 officials hope would be included in the state’s transportation improvement plan.

Monday was the last day the state accepted comments, which not only came from freight haulers, but private drivers and companies that freight haulers drive to.

Now, over the next few weeks Continental 1 executive director Meg Lauerman is looking for comments about specific intersections along Route 219. 

“It’s fantastic that we know so many people are in agreement that we need to make Route 219 more accessible and safe,” she said.

Improvements to Route 219 would mean increasing the speed and efficiency that freight moves into, out of and through the state, according to Lauerman. That would benefit the economy and transportation flow, she said.

As evident by recently submitted comments, people are always concerned about accidents, such as when Route 219 goes from two lanes to four lanes, she said.

And two projects are being eyed in the region: The intersection of routes 219 and 770, and Lewis Run at the intersection of 219, an area which Lauerman calls truck access inadequate.

Previously, DOT spokeswoman Marla Fannin told The Era that specific sites would need to be identified on Route 219, based on study, environmental impacts, customer/stakeholder feedback and concerns brought forth by planning partners, North Central Pennsylvania Regional Planning and Development Commission and Continental 1.

“These entities would be looking at safety, access and mobility issues/concerns. Locations could then be prioritized and potentially placed on the 12-year Transportation Improvement Plan,” Fannin said.

Lauerman said she is grateful for the mix of comments submitted to her and the state government. 

“They were willing to take the time because this is such an important concern to them” she said.

It’s difficult to nail down how many comments were received, she said. 

But what she does know: “We’ve always had good support n the Bradford area,” she said.

The next step for Continental 1 will be to follow-up and reach out the public, she said.

Follow-up comments can be submitted to mlauerman@continental1.org.

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