Interchange improvement may not sound glamorous, but it means greater safety and easier travel for commuters, more efficient shipping of parts and finished products for businesses, and construction workers back on the job.
On Friday, Federal Highway Administrator Victor Mendez saw this improvement taking place firsthand when he joined Delaware's congressional delegation and Delaware Secretary of Transportation Shailen Bhatt for a tour of the I-95/SR 1 Interchange Reconstruction Project, part of a multi-project solution to combat congestion along the increasingly busy Delaware Turnpike.
Within the next two years, the I-95/SR 1 Interchange Reconstruction is expected to bring major relief to the area’s worsening traffic congestion. During that time, workers will build high-speed connecting ramps from both directions of SR 1 to both directions of I-95.
These ramps will allow commuters to hit I-95 at highway speed, which will reduce the backup on I-95 and SR 1 caused by traffic struggling to merge onto the fast-moving Interstate. Relieving congestion at the interchange will bring huge relief to the more than 220,000 drivers who use it each day, and it will diminish the long traffic delays that often occur on weekends and holidays.
The Toll Plaza was formerly one of the worst chokepoints on the East Coast, and if you've driven the Delaware Turnpike since the plaza was improved, you've seen the tremendous value of that project.
Look, projects like this are exactly what our nation needs right now. Creating jobs for workers offers obvious short-term economic gains, and improving traffic flow along I-95 helps ensure long-term benefits for the state and the region.
As Administrator Mendez said, “This interchange is a lifeline for thousands of Delaware residents. Improving it will enhance their access to jobs and business opportunities and ease the shipment of goods and services up and down the Eastern seaboard.”
The SR-1/I-95 Interchange is also a great example of what the Obama Administration has been doing for three years in communities across the country. And DOT will continue putting our friends and neighbors to work on projects like this, repairing our roads, bridges, and transit systems, and building the safest, most efficient ways of moving people and products.
We know that, from Delaware to the Dakotas, the American people can't wait.