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August 21, 2020

Westbound Schuylkill Expressway in Center City closed through weekend

The same portion of I-76 West is being shut down next weekend and overnight next week for construction

Traffic Schuylkill Expressway
Westbound I-76 closures Thom Carroll/for PhillyVoice

All westbound lanes on I-76 between the 30th Street and University Avenue exits will be completely closed from Friday, Aug. 21 at 7 p.m. and will remain closed until Monday, Aug. 24 at 5 a.m. All lanes will close again the following weekend, from Friday, Aug. 28 to Monday, Aug. 31.

A stretch of the westbound Schuylkill Expressway through Center City will be closed this weekend and next weekend, as well as overnight during next week.

The traffic restrictions affect the portion of the highway between the interchanges on I-76 West. They began Friday morning with traffic along that stretch being reduced to one line. At 7 p.m. Friday, the road will be completely closed until 5 a.m. Monday morning.

The closures will allow for repairs and re-paving of the viaduct, PennDOT officials said Friday.

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These closures are expected to cause significant backups and delays. PennDOT advises motorists to use alternate routes or allow extra time when traveling through the work areas.

Here is PennDOT's lane and road closure schedule for the westbound Schuylkill Expressway for Friday, Aug. 21 to Monday, Aug. 31:

• From 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday, westbound Schuylkill Expressway is reduced to one lane through Center City. Then at 7 p.m. Friday, all westbound lanes on I-76 will be closed between the University Avenue and 30th Street exits until 5 a.m. Monday.
• Beginning Monday, Aug. 24, through Friday, Aug. 28, traffic on westbound I-76, between the 30th Street and University Avenue exits, will be reduced to a single lane from 5 a.m. until 7 p.m.. Then all westbound lanes will be closed completely from 7 p.m. to 5 a.m.
• When this portion of the highway closes at 7 p.m. Friday, Aug. 28, it will remain closed until Monday, Aug. 31, at 5 a.m.

In addition to the Schuylkill Expressway lane closure, the westbound University Avenue and Vare Avenue on-ramps will be closed until Monday, Aug. 31. The ramps for the westbound South Street exit will be closed during all weekend and overnight shutdowns of I-76.

The off-ramps to 30th Street and I-676 also will be closed during this time. Drivers will have to exit at Montgomery Drive, turn left, and then take the ramp to eastbound I-76 to connect to the 30th Street and I-676 exit.

Drivers traveling from New Jersey will be directed to go north on I-95, then west on I-676 to access I-76 west. Local drivers will be able to exit at University Avenue and follow posted detour signs to access the I-76 west ramp.

The roadwork is part of PennDOT's $40million plan to rehab and repair the I-76 viaduct. Once repairs to the westbound I-76 viaduct are complete, the transportation department will remove and replace the concrete median barrier. During this time, westbound I-76 will be reduced to a single lane through either late November or early December, PennDOT said.