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Hilltown prepping for Route 309 Connector work’s impact


The Hilltown Board of Supervisors says it’s working to mitigate potential negative impacts from a proposed major road project from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation that has residents concerned.

At a public meeting Tuesday, Supervisor Joseph Metzinger gave an update on PennDOT’s Route 309 Connector project — a three-phase road construction initiative aimed at improving vehicle flow/connectivity along a heavily traveled five-mile corridor between Sumneytown Pike, just north of the Pennsylvania Turnpike’s Lansdale Interchange, and Route 309.

The third phase of the project, which will most directly impact Hilltown and which hasn’t begun yet, has residents worried about vexing traffic jams, an influx of speeding vehicles and disruption to quality of life and business.

As currently envisioned, the third phase would redirect more 309 corridor traffic onto Fairhill Road and local access roads like Keystone Drive, officials said. Doing that could cause “safety and well-being” issues for residents, Metzinger said, adding: “We’re also concerned about the infrastructure holding up.”

Given that, township officials have been in talks with PennDOT — discussions in which they’ve raised various issues and pain points for residents. Supervisors have also developed a question and concern logbook based on feedback from residents and local businesses, which has informed the talks with state transportation officials, Metzinger said.

Meanwhile, Hilltown officials have enlisted the help of the township traffic engineer to study and suggest potential remedies, while holding meetings with state Rep. Shelby Labs and state Sen. Jarrett Coleman to ensure the elected officials know of the situation — and to enlist, if possible, their help in finding a remedy.

Metzinger said that PennDOT and its engineer are open to talks and have been receptive to feedback. What next needs to happen is that Hilltown must finalize its “ask” — particular changes to the forthcoming project that it would like to see.

“My perception is that PennDOT has not said the ship has sailed on this project,” Metzinger said.

Supervisors plan to continue soliciting feedback from residents and coordinating with officials and professionals to detail specific solutions that could alleviate what they feel are quality-of-life and safety issues associated with PennDOT’s current plan.

PennDOT has said that it aims to begin construction by 2027.

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