Brownlee Road reopens a month early

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EIGHTY FOUR – Motorists who have not been able to take a shortcut between Interstates 70 and 79 in Washington County will find the road reopened this morning, a month ahead of schedule.


A state Department of Transportation worker pulled away from the job along Brownlee Road about 3 p.m. Tuesday, saying the slide repair and pavement work had been completed early. He said a crew would be en route to paint lines on the repaired road before it reopened.


PennDOT closed the road between I-70 and Route 136 on May 29 to repair a slide about 1/2-mile south of Route 136 in Somerset Township, said Jay Ofsanik, a spokesman for the state Department of Transportation. He said the road wasn’t initially expected to reopen until July 25.


“The slide had to be repaired,” Ofsanik said, adding the road also is named Somerset Drive.


Ofsanik said Brownlee is a popular “cross-country” shortcut, one that he also drives.


While the detour followed I-70 and Route 519, some drivers had been taking the narrow Church Road to get around the road repair project.


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