Workers will shift traffic on northbound lanes of I-81 north of Harrisburg this week

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HARRISBURG — Starting Thursday night, drivers traveling north on Interstate 81 north of Harrisburg might want to allow for some extra travel time.

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation announced that contractors will begin work to shift the northbound lanes of I-81 onto the newly constructed temporary roadway in the media between Interstate 83 and Exit 72-A  for Paxtonia and Mountain Road in Lower Paxton Township.

Northbound traffic on I-81 in that area will be restricted to one lane between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m. from Thursday through Tuesday, October 3.

Thursday night, work crews will begin removing a concrete barrier and place new pavement markings on the temporary roadway in the median along I-81. Friday night, workers will set a barrier to shift northbound I-81 traffic at the Exit 72-A ramp and paint new pavement markings.

By Tuesday night, crews will finish moving all barriers to the existing travel lane, shifting northbound I-81 traffic to the temporary roadway and the I-81 on-ramp lane from I-83 toward the right-hand shoulder as crews prepare to fix the failing concrete slabs on I-81.

This work is part of the $13.6 million contract that was awarded to Hempt Bros., Inc. of Camp Hill, Cumberland County, that includes widening this section of I-81 to provide an auxiliary lane in each direction to reduce traffic congestion, improve traffic flow, and also improve safety. Preparatory work for the project began last fall.

The entire project is scheduled to be completed by the end of June 2018.

Travelers are reminded to be alert for these operations, to obey work zone signs, to use caution when driving through work zones, not only for their safety, but for the safety of the road crews.