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2024 Construction Updates

Beginning Monday, June 17, a single-lane restriction will be in place on Route 981 (Mount Pleasant Calumet Road) between First Street and Cherry Blossom Drive in Mount Pleasant Township, Westmoreland County. Traffic will be controlled by a temporary signal and is anticipated until early July, depending on weather and operations.

As the final construction season for the Laurel Valley Q20 project continues, Route 981 (Mt. Pleasant-Calumet Road) will be closed from Waltons Lane to Boyer Road for approximately two weeks beginning Tuesday, May 28, depending on weather and operations. A posted detour using Route 2021 (Kecksburg Road), Route 982, Route 31 (East/West Main Street), and Route 819 (North Diamond Street/Low Street) will be in place throughout the closure.

Route 981 Detours

Anticipated Timing

Work Area #1: May 28-June 12

Work Area #2: Summer

Estimated Duration: 15 calendar days

Purpose:

Work Area #1: Connect realigned Route 981 to existing Route 981 near Waltons Lane

Work Area #2: Realignment, grade adjustments for Route 981 tie-in to Hecla Road/ State Street roundabout

Norvelt Roundabout Now Open!

The Section Q20 project reached a major milestone with the opening of the Norvelt Roundabout on May 23. This roundabout consolidates three intersections into one efficient intersection outside the existing roadway template, greatly minimizing impacts on local businesses and residences. The transformation includes the existing Route 981 now serving as the park entrance, with Route 981 extending north following the former trolley line for smoother travel.

Roundabouts greatly improve safety and efficiency. They reduce fatal crashes by 90% and injury-causing crashes by 75%, thanks to fewer conflict points and lower speeds. They also improve traffic flow, handling 30% more vehicles during peak times with minimal delay.

Norvelt Roundabout_resized

Norvelt Roundabout_resized2

Norvelt Roundabout_resized3

Final Construction Season Underway!

The 2024 construction season will mark completion of Section Q20, between Route 819 and Norvelt, the first of three projects of the Laurel Valley Transportation Improvement Project. As the project approaches this significant milestone, motorists are urged to remain mindful of ongoing construction activities, including the presence of workers and potential changes in traffic patterns such as lane restrictions and detours. We thank the community for their ongoing patience and cooperation throughout construction!

2024 construction activities will include:

  • Flattening sharp curves near Cherry Wood Estates
  • Completing landscape architecture at the State St./Hecla Rd. roundabout
    • Completion of the Norvelt roundabout, consolidating five intersections to streamline traffic flow
    • Completion of new alignments, one north of Pennsylvania Turnpike and one north of Norvelt, to connect to existing Route 981 at Waltons Lane and near Windy Hill Court, respectively
    • Installation of two cul-de-sacs on old Route 981
    • Rehabilitation of the roadway and existing bridge structure along old Route 981

    In addition to the Norvelt Roundabout detour, other detours that are planned for the 2024 construction season include:

    2024-Detour-Maps-v2-03-with border

    Boyer Road Detour

    Anticipated Timing: Early spring

    Estimated Duration: 15 calendar days

    Purpose: Construct Boyer Road intersection with realigned Route 981

    Click to enlarge detour map

    2024-Detour-Maps-v2-05-with border

    Norvelt Detour

    Anticipated Timing: Early spring

    Estimated Duration: Two months

    Purpose: Connect new Route 981 to Norvelt roundabout

    Click to enlarge detour map

    Old Route 981 Detour

    Anticipated Timing: Late spring

    Estimated Duration: 15 calendar days

    Purpose: Rehabilitate Old Route 981 bridge over Boyer Run

    2024-Detour-Maps-01-with border

    Norvelt Roundabout Detour

    Anticipated Timing: Complete

    Estimated Duration: May 13-23, 2024

    Purpose: Connect Hecla Road (Route 2027) to newly constructed roundabout

    Click to enlarge detour map

    Read PennDOT District 12 press release

    Work Zone Safety Is Everyone's Responsibility

    2023 Construction Highlights

    The roundabouts at Hecla Road/State Street and Route 981/819 are complete and open to traffic! Explore the links below to learn more about how roundabouts will operate within the project area.

    How to Navigate Roundabouts

    Roundabouts are an innovation that are proven to save lives and reduce crashes and crash severity.

    Watch Video

    How Trucks and Large Vehicles Use Roundabouts

    Roundabouts are easy to navigate, even for tractor-trailers and other large vehicles.

    Watch Video

    The following were also completed in 2023:

    DJI_0208-resized

    New Boyer Run Bridge

    Norvelt_1-resized

    Realignment of Route 981 near Norvelt

    DJI_0199-resized

    Pavement placed on new Route 981

    • Reconstruction and widening of Route 981 from the new roundabout through the existing S-curve south of Cherry Blossom Lane
    • Drainage improvements and off-alignment work near Windy Hill Road
    • Replacement of the Hurst Run culvert

    2022 Construction Highlights

    • Excavated for the new Route 981 alignment between Carpentertown Road and Walton's Lane. Work is ongoing for the 1.75-mile new alignment north of the PA Turnpike including
    • Relocation of Carpentertown Road
    • Construction of a new Route 981/Boyer Road intersection
    • New bridge constructed over Boyer Run.

    Section Q20 Spring 2022 Excavation

    2021 Construction Highlights

    • Began physical construction on December 6, 2021
    • Demolition of residential structures acquired during the right-of-way process
    • Clearing and grubbing for new alignment and widening areas
    • Placing erosion and sedimentation controls.
    • Groundbreaking ceremony: November 12, 2021

    Section Q20 Construction January 2022

    Project Contacts

    Mark Kmetz, P.E.

    Title: PennDOT Construction Manager

    Phone: 724.439.7253

    Email: makmetz@pa.gov

    Jeffrey R. Miller

    Title: PennDOT Project Manager

    Phone: 724.849.0029

    Email: jeffemille@pa.gov

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    Project Overview

    Route 981, Section Q20 is approximately 4.5 miles and extends from the intersection of Route 981 and Route 819, just north of Mount Pleasant Borough, and ends near the intersection of Route 981 and Route 2023 in Norvelt, Mount Pleasant Township. Section Q20 primarily follows Route 981 with some offline shifts to improve the roadway.

    Anticipated Schedule

    On June 10, 2021, PennDOT advertised the Section Q20 plans for contractors to bid on. All bids were opened on July 29, 2021, and the construction contract was awarded to Walsh Construction Company in late Summer 2021.

    Walsh Construction Company of Pittsburgh, PA was issued Notice to Proceed (NTP) by PennDOT on September 21, 2021, marking the official start of construction.

    Construction of this project will be completed in the 2024 construction season.

    SR 981, Section Q20

    Project Area Map

    Learn more about the planned improvements for SR 981, Section Q20.

    View Map

    Get the most current and relevant Pennsylvania traffic information on your smart phone with 511PA, brought to you by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT).

    Typical Section
    Laurel Valley Corridor

    The upgraded LVTIP corridor will include a two-lane typical section, featuring 12-foot travel lanes and eight-foot shoulders. Curves and grades will be improved throughout the corridor, and the roadway improvement will fit the community context.

    Learn More