Public Media for Central Pennsylvania
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

PennDOT releases draft of its Route 322 connector study. The public has a month to comment

A screenshot of PennDOT's three State College Area Connector Project options for further study.
This screenshot from PennDOT's draft report on the State College Area Connector project in February 2023 shows the three options that have been proposed for further study.

Members of the public have until the end of the day March 19 to comment on PennDOT’s draft study of the 322 connector project in Centre County, one step in a project that could continue to change shape.

PennDOT's Planning and Environmental Linkages report on the State College Area Connector Projectlays out three options for overhauling a section of Route 322 in southern Centre County. But detailed engineering work has not happened yet.

PennDOT Project Manager Dean Ball said the next steps will include things such as traffic studies, working with municipalities, talking with farmers whose land is in the study area and assessing wetlands.

“Right now we're starting to get those boots on the ground, to go out and flag the wetlands to make sure we have it mapped correctly, so we can refine our impacts," Ball said.

So while three options along the U.S. current Route 322 corridor have been identified, Ball said the proposed route could change shape as PennDOT collects data.

“The final alternative could be, you know, one of the alternatives. It could be one of the alternatives that just moved here or there to increase the efficiency or reduce the environmental impacts," Ball said. "It could be a combination of a couple alternatives. It could be almost a sort of new alternative that may take parts of each one, and, you know, puts them together.”

Two of the options include a connector road from Route 322 to Route 45. Ball said a detailed traffic study was started in December and will continue this spring.

“And then we'll put that all into a traffic model and determine whether that connector would be necessary and would meet our purpose and need, which is new improved safety connectivity. And not just on the 322 corridor, but the entire roadway network in the study area," Ball said.

The draft of the study will go to the Federal Highway Administration and the central PennDOT office for review by May. Ball said they hope to narrow it down to one recommended route in 15 to 18 months.

Anne Danahy has been a reporter at WPSU since fall 2017. Before crossing over to radio, she was a reporter at the Centre Daily Times in State College, Pennsylvania, and she worked in communications at Penn State. She is married with cats.
Related Content