FINALLY: Rt. 52 roundabout is open

End of local traffic snares could only be temporary, though

Updated, 3:22 p.m.: Adds opening of roundabout

By Mike McGann, Editor, The Times


The Route 52 roundabout appears to be close to opening, but Pocopson Township officials have not received any formal notice from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation.

POCOPSON — Months later than planned — and after detours and traffic messes that angered and frustrated local residents — the Route 52 roundabout opened to traffic Friday afternoon.

The $2.6 million project was nearly three months late. Ironically, as one traffic headache abated, local drivers had to cope with the Route 926 bridge having a lane closure, backing up traffic in both directions on Rt. 926 Friday. PennDOT crews appeared to be welding repair pieces on the southern side of the bridge, which is slated to be replaced next year.

“The new roundabout will move traffic safely and efficiently between these three roadways by reducing travel speeds, reducing conflict points and making it easier for drivers to choose their route,” PennDOT District 6 Executive Lester C. Toaso said in a statement.

The project, which is designed to replace an intersection at the meetings of Route 52, Wawaset Road and Unionville-Lenape Road was originally slated to open at the end of September, but hit delays over the movement of utility poles, dragging months past the planned opening date. The roadway has been closed since late April.

With the roadways’s closure, traffic has been rerouted onto Route 926, often creating traffic back ups on Pocopson Road and heightened tensions over traffic on cut through road ways, such as Denton Hollow Road.

Even when the roundabout is open, it may only provide a temporary traffic respite for local drivers, as the 926 bridge replace is slated for 2015. Already, the bridge has seen lane closures this week to address immediate needs for repairs to the rusted, aging structure. The bridge is slated to close in August of 2015, but other work, including the repaving of the Lenape Bridge, and the possible (now in question again, as PennDOT is resisting it, government sources say) traffic light at Route 52 and Pocopson Road.

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