In June 1963, a small blurb in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette read that The Westmoreland Engineering Company was awarded a $24,060 bid to study the proposed construction of Interstate 70 in Westmoreland and Washington Counties. The study was to see what the construction and right-of-way costs "...to modernize the existing highway to Interstate requirements within eight months." (1) This small, non-attributed, three paragraph article came less than a decade after the completion of a four lane highway that linked the Mid-Mon
Valley to the Pennsylvania Turnpike. This would be the start of a 15 year process to upgrade and improve Interstate 70 - a process that ultimately never produced a single foot of new highway.
the story, albeit brief, of the I-70 that never came about.
Background: What is now
known as Interstate70 from Washington to New Stanton began as a connecting highway for
the region to the Pennsylvania Turnpike. Known as the "Express Highway", construct…
Today, the major pieces
of Charlotte's highway network include the Outerbelt (I-485), Interstates
77 and 85, and the Brookshire and Belk Freeways (I-277), but nearly sixty
years ago Charlotte's first major urban highway project would begin.
The construction of Independence Boulevard in the 1940s and early 1950s
would give Charlotte and North Carolina its first urban expressway, and
would usher in a new era of highway building throughout the state. With the help of former
mayor, Ben Douglas - who sat on the State Highway Commission in the 1940s
- the push for building Independence Blvd. began. In 1946, city residents
passed a $200,000 bond issue that would go along with over $2 million in
federal funding. The highway would open in two stages in 1949 and
1950. When a grade separated interchange was built at South Blvd.
and Morehead St. in the mid 1950s, Independence Blvd. was completed. (1)
Although the highway was not a fully controlled access highway, it gave
motorists an …
December 27, 2004 opening of the Wabash Tunnel ended over 70 years of proposals
and speculation for the use of the over 100 year old facility. The
tunnel, which is now a reversible roadway that is an alternative route for
rush hour traffic, saw many failed plans during the 20th Century. These plans included options for mass transit, converted
and new bridges for vehicles, and other forms of transportation.
Brief History: Constructed
in 1902-04, the Wabash Bridge and Tunnel was planned and financed by rail
mogul, Jay Gould. Gould began his "Battle of the Wabash" with the
established railroads of the city in 1890. He would finally emerge
victorious, but during that struggle, Gould would see many setbacks that
would eventually result in the railroad's bankruptcy in 1908. On
October 19, 1903, when the two ends of the bridge were to be joined together
over the Monongahela River, the 109' bridge collapsed; killing ten men.
Construction would resume four days later …