A $50 million road improvement project on Route 412 could spur a flurry of development in the corridor from the Sands Casino to Interstate 78.
The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation is poised to seek bids on the project, which is expected to start early next year, according to Mike Keiser, assistant district executive for design for PennDOT District 5. Once the Army Corps of Engineers signs off on the plans, which Keiser said could be any day now, his agency can begin advertising for bids.
Federal and state money will pay for a full reconstruction of Route 412, widening it both ways from where the recent casino road improvements ended around Daly Avenue to Cherry Lane by the ramps for I-78 in Hellertown. The construction is expected to last at least two years and include replacing a bridge over Saucon Creek, updating of traffic signals and widening ramps.
There is prime land for development along that corridor and the improvements could be the key ingredient to jumpstarting construction, Keiser said.
“They have potential developers just waiting,” he said. “That might tip the scales to [make them] break ground.”
Contractors are still hungry for work and Keiser said he’s hoping for at least eight or nine bidders on the project. “We see many more contractors bidding than we’ve seen in the past,” he said.