May 26, 2018
New Ramp at I-83 Exit 50 to Open for Southbound I-83 Traffic Headed to Westbound Route 22
— Southbound motorists headed to eastbound Rt. 22 will be detoured to Union Deposit Rd. (Exit 48) and back. —
Harrisburg, PA – A significant traffic change is scheduled to start on Thursday night, May 31, for southbound motorists on Interstate 83 exiting at I-83 Exit 50 for Route 22 (Jonestown Road) in Lower Paxton Township, Dauphin County. During the overnight hours between 9 PM and 6 AM, the existing off-ramp from southbound I-83 to Route 22 will be permanently closed. At the same time, the new off-ramp, located just to the right (i.e., west) of the existing ramp, will open to traffic. However, the ramp will not be fully functional at this time for all motorists headed to Route 22. It will serve only motorists headed to westbound Route 22 (toward the City of Harrisburg). The left turn onto Route 22 toward Colonial Park will not be available until later in the year due to the construction phasing in the interchange. Motorists headed to eastbound Route 22 will be detoured south on I-83 to I-83 Exit 48 for Union Deposit Road and then directed back onto northbound I-83 to Exit 50 to access eastbound Route 22.
The temporary prohibition of the left-turn from the end of the southbound off-ramp from I-83 for eastbound Route 22 is necessary because of the difference in elevation (i.e., height) between the new bridge and road under construction and the existing bridge and highway. The left turn onto eastbound Route 22 will be restored when the rest of the road and bridge have been reconstructed and built to the height of the new elevation.
Closing the existing ramp is necessary so that the contractor for the bridge and interchange project at I-83 Exit 50 has the room to build the new ramp from westbound Route 22 to southbound I-83.
Looking ahead, the work to rebuild the interchange this year will continue to involve short-term ramp closures and detours as the contractor builds the new ramps for the I-83 Exit 50 interchange. PennDOT will announce each ramp closure and detour in advance.
This work is part of an overall construction contract to replace three bridges that cross over I-83 in Lower Paxton Township – Elmerton Avenue (State Route 3026), Route 22 (Jonestown Road) and Union Deposit Road (SR 3020). The Elmerton Avenue bridge was rebuilt in 2016. Construction of the Union Deposit Road bridge at I-83 Exit 48 wrapped up last fall. The Route 22 bridge at the I-83 Exit 50 interchange should be substantially complete by the end of this year. All three new bridges will provide greater lateral under clearance to provide the width necessary to widen I-83 to six lanes. The I-83 widening project is currently scheduled to start late this year and finish in 2021.
PennDOT has contracted with New Enterprise Stone & Lime Company, Inc. of New Enterprise, Pennsylvania, to conduct the three bridge replacements at a cost of $34,199,999. The overall project with the three bridges is scheduled to wrap up in spring 2019.
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Please note: The picture below was taken from the Elmerton Avenue bridge over I-83, looking south toward the I-83 Exit 50 interchange. It shows the current off-ramp that takes motorists to a signalized intersection with Route 22. To the right of the existing ramp is the new ramp that is scheduled to open on Thursday night, May 31, for traffic headed to westbound Route 22. Because of the difference in elevation between the existing road and the new road (see attachment), it is not possible to include the left turn onto eastbound Route 22 at this time. This traffic will be detoured by way of southbound I-83 to Union Deposit Road (Exit 48) and back on northbound I-83.