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Ben Franklin Bridge Traffic Construction On Track To End Soon

By Mike DeNardo

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - Ben Franklin Bridge commuters should be able to breathe a sigh of relief next week, when the latest phase of PATCO track work comes to an end.

Since August, westbound drivers on the Ben Franklin Bridge have been squeezed to three or even two lanes, and since Memorial Day, PATCO has run with gaps of up to a half-hour between trains.

Things should all get better Wednesday morning, October 22, when the lane closures end and PATCO resumes a closer-to-normal schedule.

"Once Wednesday morning rolls around, during the week we will have the regular schedule back," says DRPA CEO John Hanson.

Hanson knows that riders and drivers have endured a lot since this phase of PATCO track reconstruction started:

"It hasn't been easy on anybody. And we're very sorry about that. But the fact is, it was very important to get these tracks finished."

The job still has more than a year to go, though.

Hanson says there will still be some weeeknd train delays and traffic lane closures as the PATCO signal and communications systems on the bridge are rebuilt.

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