Changes Coming to Harbeson Intersection - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Changes Coming to Harbeson Intersection

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HARBESON, Del. -  A Harbeson intersection is at the center of DelDOT's upcoming projects in Sussex County.

DelDOT is hosting a public hearing for its Capital Transportation Program from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. today at the DelDOT South District Administration Building located at 23697 DuPont Boulevard in Georgetown. According to DelDOT Community Relations Officer Jim Westhoff, DelDOT engineers will present displays for upcoming projects across the county: improvements to Iron Branch Road, improvements to the Route 24 intersection at Mount Joy Road and improvements to the Route 9 and Route 5 intersection in Harbeson. Attendees may also ask about the progress of any other project.

According to DelDOT's website, the Harbeson project entails adding an exclusive left turn lane to each of the four directions at the intersection. Eddie Pilling used to live in Harbeson, and says the lanes will be a welcome change.

"This intersection has always been bound up. Always," he said. "Especially the drive home from Lewes to Georgetown is always backed up. So turn lanes would absolutely benefit this area."

DelDOT's website says the project will also include drainage improvements and fix some sidewalks. A flyer on the website says the location was identified "as a site needing safety improvements by the 2009 Hazard Elimination Program." The flyer says there were 110 reported crashes from 2005 to 2015, and 51% of them were rear-end crashes. DelDOT also says there were many incidences of trucks hitting the cemetery wall. Pilling says he's seen this first hand.

"The brick wall here--the cemetery--has been hit many times in all directions," Pilling described. "And I've seen [drivers] pulling into [this gas station] just to get off the road and keep traffic moving."

DelDOT Project Manager John Caruano told WBOC that construction should begin in the Spring of 2018. He said once the project starts, it should be completed in about a year. DelDOT's website says the project will cost an estimated $3.5 million, and it's fully funded. Caruano said about 90% of the project's costs are covered by federal funds. Pilling says he knows the construction will be a bit of an inconvenience, but it will be worth it in the end.

"You have to crack a shell to make an egg," he said. "But once the construction is done, it should help this whole area."

More information on DelDOT's public hearings is available on their website.

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