Preliminary 522 corridor study finds need for traffic-slowing measures | News
SELINSGROVE — Safety concerns on a section of Route 522 in Selinsgrove borough and Penn Township has led to a study to determine whether signal lights and other traffic-slowing measures should be installed.
The $56,000 study of a 3.3-mile section of Route 522 from the green bridge in Selinsgrove to the Pawling Station Business Park in Penn Township was conducted by Michael Baker International, spearheaded by SEDA-Council of Governments and funded by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation to determine ways to make the roadway safer and easier to travel.
“I’ve been discussing that corridor for three or four years,” said Snyder County Director of Planning Lincoln Kaufman.
Between 2016 and 2020 there have been 115 crashes, including one fatality, on the section of Route 522 that serves more than 7,000 vehicles a day, according to the preliminary report.
“Of these crashes, 32 involved serious or minor injuries for 49 persons” and one involved a pedestrian, the report said. “Exposure to crashes for vulnerable pedestrians is significant since there are numerous business, educational and recreational assets along the corridor.”
Kaufman said the findings include recommending a traffic signal at Route 522 and 18th Street. The report also considered a traffic signal at Route 522 and Clifford Road and a roundabout at Route 522 and University Avenue and Salem Road.
A public hearing will be held but has not yet been scheduled, said PennDOT spokesman Kim Smith.
Mark Wolfberg, the Selinsgrove Area School District transportation coordinator and police chief, said the district is in favor of a traffic signal at Route 522 and 18th Street.
“We stopped sending buses because it was too dangerous to head west onto Route 522 from 18th Street. With cars and trucks moving up and down the hill, it was too risky pulling buses out there,” said Wolfberg, who along with several other stakeholders serves on an advisory committee to Michael Baker International.
Selinsgrove Borough Manager Lauren Martz said the municipality is most concerned with the pedestrian safety at the intersection of Route 522 and Broad Street.
Since only 18th Street is in the borough and the other area of concern at the intersection of Route 522 falls in the township, she said, the borough isn’t keen to maintain a traffic signal at that spot.
“There definitely does need to be public input,” she said.
The township supervisors are waiting to hear more about the proposals.
“I just want a light at Salem, I don’t care about the other intersections,” said Supervisor Ross Smoker.
Township Chairman Jon Payne said his concern is for the safety of all residents and said the township has already agreed to maintain a traffic signal that will be installed on Route 204 and Mill Street at the Camelback Bridge during construction of the southern end of the thruway project.