Dear Editor:

This is in response to the July 12 and July 15 articles written by David Wargo about drainage issues in the area of the U.S. 209 improvement project in Mahoning Township, Carbon County.

The $1,710,782 improvement entails resurfacing nearly four miles of U.S. 209 between the Thomas J. McCall Memorial Bridge and Susquehanna Street in Mahoning Township, Jim Thorpe, and Lehighton boroughs. It also includes installing new drainage features. The project is financed with federal funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).

Generally, PennDOT's roads and bridges serve as a flow area for the transmission of water across its right-of-way. In most cases, PennDOT is responsible to maintain bridges, cross pipes and open drainage ditches within the legal right-of-way of a state road.

The new road surface has the appropriate slope to ensure proper drainage of water from the roadway. As part of this project, new drainage inlets were installed, and where appropriate, a small berm was constructed at the roadway edge to ensure water makes its way to the drainage inlets. The drainage situation on U.S. 209 in Mahoning Township does not cause any safety related concerns as the water continues along the curb line to the next inlet. All drainage inlets in the entire work area on U.S. 209 will be cleaned and flushed when the project is completed.

Regarding the roadway millings from the project, they are the property of the contractor, Hanson Aggregates, LLC of Allentown. If Mahoning Township or anyone else has an interest in obtaining these millings, they will need to contact Hanson Aggregates.

Lastly, Hanson Aggregates and PennDOT are adhering to all laws and regulations pertaining to drainage on this project and will continue doing so.

Very truly yours,

Michael W. Rebert, P.E.

District Executive

Engineering District 5-0