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Turnpike Commission unveils plans for next phase of Mon-Fayette Expressway construction

WEST MIFFLIN, Pa. — The Mon-Fayette Expressway is a project that’s been decades in the making and is still years from completion.

Currently, drivers can take the toll road from I-68 near Morgantown, West Virginia through Fayette and Washington Counties.

Now the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission is celebrating the kickoff of the next phase of construction in Allegheny County.

Wednesday night, project leaders held an open house in West Mifflin attended by hundreds of people, eager to learn about the project.

The Turnpike Commission broke ground this month on the second stage of seven planned in Allegheny County to take Route 43 from Route 51 in Jefferson Hills to Route 837 in Duquesne.

“Being able to get from Uniontown and Fayette County to Allegheny County and the Pittsburgh area, there’s never been an easy way to get up here,” said Construction Engineering Manager Steve Hrvoich. “This is basically a high-speed bypass.”

State Senator Jim Brewster has been working on securing funding for this major expressway project for three decades.

But he says the work isn’t done yet.

“When we get to Kennywood, in Duquesne, we’ve got to find the money to get over the river, over the Turtle Creek Valley, into Monroeville, and hook up with the Parkway and the Turnpike,” Brewster said.

Upcoming construction will take place near Gene Staudt’s home in West Mifflin, but despite possible disruptions and detours, he’s remaining positive about the project.

“If there’s more people coming into the area because of the progress, then that’s going to be a good thing for the Borough and that’s going to be a good thing for West Mifflin, for the area,” Staudt said.

But not everyone is sold on the Mon-Fayette Expressway.

“I’ve driven 43. It seems like it’s sometimes sparsely used. I don’t know if connecting it up near the Pennsylvania Turnpike in Monroeville, when they finally finish all of it is really going to up the traffic volume or not,” said Fred Bell, from Pittsburgh.

There will be several detours in place throughout this next phase of construction.

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