Blake Announces Nearly $4 Million in PennDOT Grants for Lackawanna County Projects

SCRANTON, May 8, 2018 – State Sen. John Blake (D-Lackawanna/Luzerne/Monroe) today announced that four Lackawanna County projects will receive nearly $4 million in grants through the Surface Transportation Block Grant program and Transportation Alternatives (TA) Set-Aside.

The funding was announced today by Governor Tom Wolf and PennDOT Secretary Leslie Richards as part of a nearly $67 million investment in 82 projects across the Commonwealth.

“I applaud the Governor and Secretary Richards for their continued support of our region and their dedication to innovation and access to transportation alternatives and recreation,” Blake said. “The Lackawanna River Heritage Trail continues to be one of the strongest drivers of economic activity and the funding announced today will further strengthen its impact and connectivity between our local communities.” 

The following projects in Lackawanna County received grant funding:

  • The City of Scranton will receive $1 million to connect the Lackawanna River Heritage Trail to the Steamtown National Historic Site and downtown Scranton with a pedestrian bridge.
  • Dickson City will receive $991,110 for streetscaping, safety improvements and a bike path connecting to the Lackawanna River Heritage Trail.
  • Keystone College will receive $917,815 to provide pedestrians and bicyclists a safe route to travel along College Road and also connect to the seven miles of public trails in the area of the campus.
  • The Lackawanna Heritage Valley Authority will receive $200,000 to construct a 0.9 mile paved trail from Parker Street in Scranton to Boulevard Avenue in Dickson City – closing a major gap in the Lackawanna River Heritage Trail. This funding supplements a $800,000 TA Set-Aside award from the Lackawanna and Luzerne Transportation Study MPO.

The TA Set-Aside provides funding for projects and activities defined as transportation alternatives, including on- and off-road pedestrian and bicycle facilities, infrastructure projects for improving non-driver access to public transportation and enhanced mobility, community improvement activities, and environmental mitigation, trails that serve a transportation purpose, and safe routes to school projects.

Blake noted that PennDOT evaluated the applications and made selections of awards based on safety benefit; cost; readiness for implementation; statewide or regional significance; and the integration of land-use and transportation decision making.

# # #

Blake Announces $175K in PennDOT Grants for Two Local Traffic Signal Projects

SCRANTON, May 11, 2017 – State Sen. John Blake (D-Lackawanna/Luzerne/Monroe) today announced that two projects in the City of Scranton and Clarks Green Borough have received Green Light-Go grant funding.

The two local projects were among the 94 municipalities that will receive $33 million to support the costs of upgrading traffic signals under the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation’s “Green Light-Go” program.  

“The Green Light-Go program is another key source of funding for local municipalities that we were able to create in 2013 through Act 89,” Blake said. “I applaud PennDOT for recognizing the importance of these two traffic and safety projects in Scranton and Clarks Green and delivering this much-needed funding to Lackawanna County projects.”

The City of Scranton received $135,200 for traffic signal replacement along Green Ridge St. at Wyoming Ave. in a high traffic area of the City. Clarks Green Borough received a grant of $39,755 for traffic signal equipment upgrades along East Grove St. at South Abington Rd. in the borough.

The Green Light-Go Program, created through Act 89 of 2013, provides state funds for the operation and maintenance of traffic signals along critical and designated corridors on state highways. The program is designed to improve safety and mobility by reducing congestion and improving efficiency of existing traffic signals on state and local highways.

The Green Light-Go Program is a competitive application and reimbursement grant program requiring a 20% match for municipalities, counties, or planning organizations requesting financial assistance for existing traffic signal maintenance and operations activities.

# # #

Blake Encourages Municipalities to Apply for Multimodal Grant Funding

SCRANTON, October 1, 2015 – State Sen. John Blake (D-Lackawanna/Luzerne/Monroe) today encouraged local governments and businesses pursuing transportation improvement projects to apply for funding through the state’s Multimodal Transportation Fund.

“When we passed the historic transportation funding package in 2013, we wanted to ensure that our investments in transportation projects across the Commonwealth would create jobs, stimulate regional economies and make travel safer for our commuters,” Blake said. “The Multimodal Transportation Fund provides that opportunity for our municipalities, local transportation agencies and business community by encouraging development and innovation to create a safe and efficient transportation network.”

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) will begin accepting applications for the $40 million available in Multimodal Transportation Fund grants for the coming fiscal year on October 3. The program is open to municipalities, counties, school districts, councils of government, businesses, non-profits, economic development organizations, public transportation agencies, transportation management associations, ports or rail/freight entities.

Blake said that grants through the Multimodal Transportation Fund can be used for the development, rehabilitation and enhancement of transportation assets to existing communities including streetscape, lighting, sidewalk enhancement, pedestrian safety, connectivity of transportation assets and transit-oriented development. PennDOT will evaluate applicants based on safety benefits, regional economic conditions, the technical and financial feasibility, job creation, energy efficiency, and operational sustainability.

Applications for multimodal grants are due by December 18 and PennDOT plans to announce the grant recipients in early 2016 for the funds that will be released in July 2016.

# # #

Sen. Blake, Rep. Carroll Break Ground on $42M Highway Construction Project

PITTSTON TOWNSHIP – State Sen. John Blake and Rep. Mike Carroll today heralded the start of a $42 million highway project near the Wilkes-Barre Scranton International Airport that will improve traffic safety and lead to new economic development opportunities for the region.

Blake (D-Lackawanna/Luzerne/Monroe) and Carroll (D-Luzerne/Monroe) joined PennDOT and other state and local officials in a groundbreaking ceremony for the project, which will feature a new road linking the airport with the Grimes Industrial Park, plus longer and safer on- and off-ramps for Exit 178 of I-81 and three roundabouts designed for smoother vehicle flow.

The new and long-needed connection between Grimes Industrial Park and I-81 will help to relieve local roads of heavy truck traffic.

“Today we mark a new beginning and we commit new federal, state and local investments that will ensure safer commutes for our residents and for visitors to our region while improving prospects for business growth and jobs,” said Blake. “This groundbreaking means the hard work, perseverance and diligence of our local officials has finally paid off.”

“For 20 years, the Lackawanna and Luzerne county commissioners have been working with Dupont Borough, Pittston Township and Avoca Borough officials plus business leaders, airport officials and PennDOT to put a shovel in the ground to begin this project, and we are finally here,” Carroll said. “Today marks another giant step forward for the Greater Pittston area and for the people of Lackawanna and Luzerne counties. I’m thankful for the efforts of all who laid the foundation for today’s groundbreaking.”

The project will include the expansion of four bridges along I-81, the replacement of a pedestrian bridge and the repaving of a 1.5 mile section of the highway.

The project will open 95 acres of airport property for economic development. Construction is expected to last two years. Pennsy Supply won the bid for the general construction contract.


Sen. Blake, Rep. Carroll to Join PennDOT in Announcing $42M Airport Project

SCRANTON – State Sen. John Blake and Rep. Mike Carroll will join the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation at 1 p.m., Wednesday, July 10, at the Wilkes-Barre Scranton International Airport for a groundbreaking ceremony on a vital new construction project.

The $42 million project will include new on- and off-ramps along Exit 178 of I-81, a new road connecting the airport to the Grimes Industrial Park, plus three roundabouts to make traveling in the area safer and increase economic development opportunities for the region.

Media coverage is encouraged.


WHAT:          Sen. John Blake, Rep. Mike Carroll to participate in PennDOT’s groundbreaking for $42 million construction project in Pittston Township

WHEN:          1:00 p.m., Wednesday, July 10

WHERE:       Parking lot on Navy Way Road, between Terminal Road and the Holiday Inn Avoca