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News: East Hanover Township Wins Statewide Road and Bridge Safety Award


April 22, 2014

Contact: Ginni Linn
Director of Communications
(717) 763-0930

East Hanover Township Wins Statewide Road and Bridge Safety Improvement Award

East Hanover Township in Dauphin County was named a co-winner of the 32nd Annual Road and Bridge Safety Improvement Award, presented at the 92nd Annual Educational Conference of the Pennsylvania State Association of Township Supervisors in Hershey April 13-16, 2014. The conference attracted attendees from every county in Pennsylvania except Philadelphia, which has no townships. East Hanover Township won the award for an intersection improvement project.

The township association sponsors the statewide Road and Bridge Safety Improvement Contest each year in partnership with the Pennsylvania Highway Information Association and the state Department of Transportation to recognize townships for their extensive contributions of time and effort in making roads and bridges safer.

East Hanover Township undertook the project to address a dangerous intersection where State Route 743, known locally as Laudermilch Road, meets South Meadow Lane, a local road. A rise in Laudermilch Road as it approached the cross road, as well as a large earthen bank at the intersection, restricted the sight distance for motorists on South Meadow Lane. In fact, the sight distance was only about 240 feet looking north, which was inadequate for pulling onto a road with a 45 mph speed limit.

The township engaged its engineer, LTL Consultants, Ltd., to perform a site investigation, determine a course of action, and prepare a design for reconstruction of the intersection. After considering several options, the township decided to raise the profile of South Meadow Lane at the intersection while lowering the profile of Laudermilch Road and shifting it slightly to the east to increase the sight distance to 610 feet, which would bring it into compliance with PennDOT specifications for this type of road.

The design also kept the improvements within the existing right of way, requiring only temporary grading easements from adjacent property owners. Local residents were more than happy to see the improvements, and the township worked with them to regrade the properties and provide screening and landscaping to reduce noise and glare from traffic.

The contractor, Handwerk Site Contractors, began the project in February 2013 and completed it in mid-April 2013. After the road was reopened, dozens of residents praised the township for improving the unsafe intersection, which many refused to use because of the dangerous conditions.

One lifelong resident told the township she didn’t think she would ever see the day that she could use the intersection, and another said that she hoped the redesigned intersection would eliminate the sounds of skidding tires due to near-miss accidents. The project has also resulted in reduced calls for emergency services and decreased commute times.

“This intersection had been a safety concern for residents and the community for as long as it had been paved,” Township Manager Ron Reeder says. “To say the project was well-received by the local community would be an understatement.”

The Pennsylvania State Association of Township Supervisors represents Pennsylvania’s 1,454 townships of the second class and for the past 93 years has been committed to preserving and strengthening township government and securing greater visibility and involvement for townships in the state and federal political arenas. Townships of the second class cover 95 percent of the land mass in Pennsylvania and represent more residents — 5.5 million — than any other type of political subdivision in the commonwealth.

Note: Ron Reeder, East Hanover Township’s manager, can be reached at (717) 469-0833.