Phase 2 of county multimodal project will start next week

From staff reports

Construction on the second phase of the Venango County multimodal transit facility project will begin next week, PennDOT and Venango County announced Wednesday.

The $9.5 million, 25,000-square-foot facility will be constructed on the existing PennDOT District 1 parking lot along Elm and Duncomb streets in Oil City, according to a press release from the county and PennDOT.

The facility will feature administrative offices and vehicle maintenance, storage and wash facilities for Venango County’s public transit system, and space for PennDOT’s fleet maintenance operations, the press release said.

The contractors are Hudson Construction of Hermitage, Renick Brothers Construction Co. of Slippery Rock, Wm. T. Spaeder Co. of Erie and Westmoreland Electric Services of Tarrs.

Construction is expected to take about 16 months to complete.

The initial phase of the project was completed in the summer of 2018 and included the construction of a new parking lot at the site of the former parking garage off Elm and Seneca streets, the press release said. The new lot features a bus shelter, rain gardens, street lighting, a bicycle fix-it station and sidewalks.

A new connecting street, to be known as Clifford Street, was also built between Elm and Seneca streets to facilitate the future closure of a portion of Elm Street near Duncomb Street, according to the press release.

As part of the second phase, PennDOT employees will use the new parking lot to accommodate the construction of the county facility. The public is being asked to avoid using the new lot during business hours on weekdays, as it is now a PennDOT-only parking area at those times.

Phase 2 will start with the creation of a new traffic pattern on Seneca Street. A new traffic island will be built at the intersection of Seneca and Clifford streets.

Pavement markings will be adjusted along Seneca Street to allow for two-way traffic between Clifford Street and Duncomb Street.

The existing traffic signals at the intersection of Seneca Street and Duncomb Street will be deactivated, and temporary stop signs will be erected at the intersection of Seneca Street and Clifford Street.

A 90-day traffic study will be conducted to determine if a signal is needed at the newly created intersection.

Once the changes on Seneca Street are in place, the portion of Elm Street near Duncomb Street will be closed and traffic on the north end of Elm Street will be rerouted to Clifford Street, the press release said. The vacated portion of Elm Street will become part of the new parking lot and transportation facility site.

The project is being funded through the Federal Transit Administration (80 percent), PennDOT Bureau of Public Transportation (19 percent), and Venango County (1 percent).