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Turnpike Slip Ramp


Letter to Bradley Mallory from
State Senator James W. Gerlach



March 1, 1999
The Honorable Bradley Mallory
Secretary
PA Department of Transportation
Forum Place, 9th Floor
555 Walnut Street
Harrisburg, PA 17101-1900
RE:  Turnpike Slip Ramp Project/ Charlestown Township, Chester County
Dear Secretary Mallory:
Last week, I had an opportunity to attend a Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission meeting with local officials to discuss the above project. At that time, considerable discussion was held on the scope and quality of the traffic data upon which the Commission is basing its assumptions of the need for and impact of the 3 alternatives proposed for this project. As a result, it was agreed that the Chester County Planning. Commission will work with the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission to more thoroughly acquire and analyze the necessary data to determine the ultimate need, safety and growth management impact of this project.
At the same time, pending this data collection and analysis process, the Commission has agreed to work with a citizens advisory group, made up of local officials, citizens, etc., to more thoroughly review these issues and undertake additional public comment and input before rendering a final determination on whether to move forward with the project. Part and parcel of that review is going to be whether implementation of the project will have any adverse impact on the goals and objectives agreed to by local municipalities and the County in the Landscapes partnership formed recently. As a member of the Pennsylvania 21st Century Environment Commission, I am sure you have heard of the Landscapes partnership wherein 68 of 73 municipalities in Chester County have agreed to common land use goals and objectives. If this nationally recognized partnership is to ultimately have the force and effect for which it is intended--that is to regionally partner in dealing with the land use and growth management issues--then it is imperative that state agencies, such as PennDOT, undertake consideration of Landscapes goals and objectives and render decisions consistent with Landscapes on any applications before them.
It is my understanding that the project cannot move forward to final conclusion without PennDOT working in cooperation with the Commission to allow for various access and construction authority. Consequently, in light of the ongoing review and citizen input process that will move forward, I am requesting that PennDOT halt any further consideration of this project until the final results are in on whether the Landscapes goals and objectives will or will not be met by this project. At that time, the Department's full consideration of these findings vis-a-vis project approval would be most appreciated.
Thank you for your cooperation.
Very truly yours,
James W. Gerlach


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