The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) has determined that one out of every three state roads in Western Pennsylvania is dangerously defective and has rated them as "poor." Ratings this dismal typically trigger an onslaught of repaving projects, but lack of state funding means these roads may have to wait.
Using a machine with cameras and lasers to analyze roadway defects, PennDOT scored thousands of miles of roads throughout the region. The roads ranged from interstate highways like the Parkway East to rural streets with little traffic.
Thirty-one percent—a total of 3,014 miles of state roads in Western Pennsylvania—received "poor" ratings. Although interstates generally had fewer defects than rural roads, some poorly-rated thoroughfares, like portions of Forbes Avenue in Oakland, are found in highly-trafficked areas.
To repair the startling number of dangerous road conditions in our region, the state must repave them soon, but a lack of funding from Harrisburg prevents immediate roadway renovations. PennDOT officials maintain that Pittsburgh's crumbling bridges are the more pressing safety issue at the moment, thus diverting more funds to repair the bridges rather than fix Western Pennsylvania's many hazardous roads.