Kathy Liebler
                        Director of Public Information

    C   O   M   M   I   S   S   I   O   N                N   E   W   S             R   E   L   E   A   S   E

             Contact: Joe Agnello (412) 925-5462                                         January 14, 1997


        The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission will host an open house public meeting from 6 to 9 p.m. Tuesday, January 21, 1997 at the Findlay Township Municipal Building to present its latest plans for the proposed Southern Beltway between Pa. Route 60 in Findlay Township, Allegheny County and U.S. Route 22 in Robinson Township, Washington County.
        Interested citizens are invited to review and comment on alignment alternatives during the three-hour period. Turnpike Commission staff and consultants will be available to explain maps and other displays, present the status of the project and answer questions.
        The Turnpike Commission is recommending that two "build" alternatives be studied further as part of the preparation of a Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS), which also will include an evaluation of the environmental effects of a "no-build" alternative. Three other proposed "build" alternatives be dropped from further consideration. New information on all of the alternatives for the six-mile expressway will be presented at the open house.
        Both of the "build" alternatives that the Turnpike Commission proposes to carry forward (the Tan Alternative and Green Alternative, see attached map) would connect to U.S. Route 22 between the Bavington and Pa. Route 980 interchanges. At the northern end, one of the alternatives would link with Pa. Route 60 at Moon-Clinton Road northwest of Pittsburgh International Airport. The other would connect with Pa. Route 60 at the Midfield Terminal interchange, providing direct access from the Beltway to the airport.
        The Turnpike Commission expects to circulate its DEIS and the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) for the project later this year. Both documents will contain a preferred alternative.
        A Record of Decision on the FEIS from the U.S. Department of Transportation's Federal Highway Administration is anticipated in the fall of this year. Issuance of a Record of Decision would allow the Turnpike Commission to begin final design of the expressway and the acquisition of needed rights-of-way. Construction costs for the proposed project are estimated at $98 million.
        The Findlay Township Municipal Building is located on U.S. Route 30 in the village of Clinton and is accessible to persons with disabilities. Any disabled person in need of transportation should call the Turnpike Commission's Public Information/Public Involvement Unit at (412) 925-5460 at least one day prior to the meeting so that arrangements can be made.


         P.O. Box 67676, Harrisburg, PA 17106-7676         Phone: (717) 939-9551         Fax: (717) 986-9649