DUNMORE — The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation plans to rebuild and widen six miles of Interstate 81 from the Luzerne County line to the Central Scranton Expressway.
But that’s not expected to happen anytime soon.
According to information from PennDOT spokesman Mike Taluto, the project is at least five years away and would take three to four years to complete. The estimated cost is $174 million.
The project, funded through the state transportation plan to repair roads and rebuild bridges throughout the state, is a scaled-down version of a plan from several years ago to widen a 33-mile section of the interstate in Luzerne and Lackawanna counties. That proposal sat idle for lack of funding while the project’s estimated cost kept increasing.
A study completed about seven years ago estimated it would take $1.09 billion for the expansion and other improvements in the congested corridor between the Nanticoke and Waverly exits.
The planned six-mile project will widen the highway by adding a third lane in each direction to help accommodate the growing numbers of vehicles.