News Releases

PennDOT Awards Contract to Reconstruct and Improve Richmond Street

First stage of I-95 reconstruction between Allegheny Avenue & Frankford Creek

June 22, 2018 – The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) has awarded a $32,139,695 construction contract to A.P. Construction, Inc., of Blackwood, New Jersey, to reconstruct and improve Richmond Street between Ann Street and Westmoreland Street in the Port Richmond section of Philadelphia.

This project (I-95/AF1) is the first stage in the larger reconstruction of I-95’s pavement and on-off ramps between Allegheny Avenue and Frankford Creek (I-95/AFC) that is projected to begin in 2024.

“Improving the overall function, safety and appearance of Richmond Street and it’s transit facilities will help to improve traffic flow on this important connector between the Allegheny Avenue and Girard Avenue interchanges,” said PennDOT District 6 Executive Kenneth M. McClain. “This project sets the stage for rebuilding I-95 and the Allegheny Avenue/Castor Avenue Interchange during upcoming phases of the project.” 

Utility work associated with the project is currently underway on Richmond Street and will continue for the remainder of 2018. Crews have been working since early spring to install and connect new natural gas lines and relocate PECO poles.

Construction to widen Melvale Street and Emery Street is expected to begin this summer. The reconstruction of the Richmond Street roadway, trolley tracks, and sidewalks is expected to begin in early 2019.

Under the AF1 project, Richmond Street will be widened by two feet between Ann Street and Allegheny Avenue to provide 11-foot wide northbound and southbound travel lanes that will straddle newly-installed trolley tracks. The wider travel lanes, a result of PennDOT’s ‘multi-modal’ approach to designing and building Richmond Street improvements to benefit motorists, transit riders and pedestrians, will allow vehicles to pass safely between SEPTA’s Route 15 Trolley and vehicles parked along Richmond Street.
The project also includes additional safety enhancements along Richmond Street, including painted crosswalks and ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) ramps — with detectable warning surfaces for the visually impaired — at all intersections.

PennDOT’s multi-modal approach to this project also is reflected in improvements that will be made to the Westmoreland Loop and the Clearfield Street trolley stop. 

Curb bump-outs will be installed at the Clearfield Street stop. The bump-outs, designed to  enhance passenger safety during loading and unloading, will also accommodate the improved ADA access being built into the next generation of modernized trolleys that SEPTA may add to its future fleet. 

A modernized transit fleet also will be accommodated by improvements at the Westmoreland Loop. PennDOT will install raised, ADA-accessible platforms with detectable warning surfaces, bollards and chains at all boarding areas. Crosswalks also will be painted across the entrance/exit driveways and to transit platforms.  

Details of the AF1 project include: 

  • Widening Richmond Street by two feet from Ann Street to Allegheny Avenue;
    Improving the stormwater drainage system;
  • Replacing SEPTA Route 15 trolley tracks and catenary poles from Ann Street to Westmoreland Street;
  • Reconstructing SEPTA Westmoreland Loop trolley/bus station including new pavement, bus shelter, trolley platforms, stormwater management, perimeter wall/fencing, and landscaping; 
  • Constructing raised curb extensions (bump-outs) for SEPTA trolley stop at Clearfield Street;
  • Replacing numerous utilities, including installation of new sub-surface gas and water mains and relocating PECO electric poles; 
  • Replacing Richmond Street curbs, sidewalks, ADA curb ramps, and traffic signals;
  • Widening and repaving Melvale Street from East Clearfield Street to Wishart Street, and Emery Street from Westmoreland Street to Madison Street to provide additional on-street parking;
  • Installing new ornamental, pedestrian-scale street lights from Ann Street to Westmoreland Street; and
  • Planting 60-plus trees street trees along the improved section of Richmond Street. 

The entire project is expected to be completed by late 2019. 

Southbound Richmond Street traffic will be detoured during construction in 2018 and 2019, and short-term, block-long closures for northbound motorists will be needed during replacement of trolley tracks in the center of Richmond Street in 2019. 

This improvement project is being financed with 90 percent federal and 10 percent state funds.