Skip to main content

Interstate 70 at Kammerer Construction Photos

A few weeks ago in response to my post about the early construction of Interstate 70 in Southwestern Pennsylvania, I received a handful of photos from Randy Metz of the construction of the highway at the Kammerer exit which is now Exit 31.  These photos which date from the mid-1950s show the conversion of an at-grade intersection of then Alternate PA 71 and McIlvanie Road to an interchange. 

Alternate PA 71 was known as the "Express Highway" that gave Mid-Mon Valley towns a direct link to the Pennsylvania Turnpike in New Stanton.  This highway would be added to the Interstate Highway System as Interstate 70S in 1960 and changed to Interstate 70 in 1964.  When the four-lane highway was originally built, it was built as a mix of interchanges and at-grade intersections.  These intersections were either replaced with overpasses or slowly converted to interchanges in the late 1950s.

Mr. Metz's family still resides and operates a farm nearby.  He was kind enough to share these photos that show the early history of one of Western Pennsylvania's busiest highways.

Image courtesy Randy Metz
This photo shows the construction of the overpass that carries McIlvanie Road over the highway.  What is now Exit 31 on Interstate 70 is just beginning to take place.  The Carlton Motel was already in business and was served via a driveway that was at grade with the highway.  It also appears that Alternate 71 ended here temporarily.

The Carlton Motel was built by the Carl family and opened in 1953 and would expand from seven to 25 rooms by 1960. (1)

Image courtesy Randy Metz
The large tree in this photo was removed to make way for what would be the offramp from westbound I-70.  That again is the Carlton Motel in the background.  After the interchange was built, the motel's driveway in the first photo was moved to the westbound offramp.  When the motel added a restaurant in 1960,  the odd driveway off the exit ramp was removed.

Image courtesy Randy Metz
The color photo show some of the various dump trucks that were used in the highway's construction.  As a result of building the new highway, the Metz Family farm would be spilt in two as the state needed 26 acres of their property for the right of way.   The family did get a 7' x 7' tunnel under the highway connecting the split properties and allowing cattle and tractors to go from one side of the Interstate to the other.

cardcow.com
This old postcard shows the Carlton Motel and Restaurant along with Interstate 70 sometime in the 1960s.  This shows how substandard the Interstate highway was 50 years ago.  The center median was a 6-inch wide x 4-inch high raised curb.  In addition, it appears that the outside shoulders were not paved. 

Site Navigation:

Comments

Malibu72 said…
A "turnpike" design, largely modeled after the first turnpike, the 1940 Pennsylvania, later I-76. These substandard roads, state of the art for their time, were grandfathered into the Interstate System. Worst features were the narrow median and lack of consistent shoulders, as well as abrupt on and off ramps, where stop signs were sometimes utilized.
Anonymous said…
They just razed the former Cartlon motel building about a year or so ago. Last time I was thru the restaurant is still standing but the actual restaurant has ceased operations at that site and is now located in nearby downtown Bentleyville.

Popular posts from this blog

California State Route 190; a Trans-Sierra Highway that could have been

This past week I decided to take a small scale road trip on California State Route 190 from CA 99 east to the unbuilt section over the Sierra Nevada Range.  While I was in for what turned out to be a fun drive following the course of the Tule River watershed what I found researching the back story of CA 190 was one of the most complex and unusual stories of any California State Highway.  Given that I had a ton of older photos of the eastern segment of CA 190 in the Mojave Desert of Inyo County I thought it was time to put something together for the entire route. The simplified story of CA 190 is that it is a 231 mile state highway that has a 43 mile unbuilt gap in the Sierra Nevada Range.  CA 190 is an east/west State Highway running from CA 99 in Tulare County at Tipton east to CA 127 located in Death Valley Junction near the Nevada State Line in rural Inyo County.  The routing CA 190 was adopted into the State Highway system as Legislative Route 127 which was adopted in 1933 acc

I-73/I-74 and NC Future Interstates, Year in Review 2022

Another year over, already? 2022 turned out to be quite the year if you are a fan of new interstate routes, and it wasn't bad for some long standing favorites. As per the tradition, I will review what happened with I-73 and I-74, and then the other new and future interstate routes in North Carolina... Work continued on the one segment of I-73 under construction, the I-73/I-74 Rockingham Bypass. As of the beginning of December, work was getting close to being 2/3 complete at 60.1%. Progress could be seen from US 74 on constructing of the future interchange at the Bypass's southern end. Here's a look from US 74 East in September from Google Maps Street View: Here's a photo from US 74 West taken last week by David Gallo: Work is now scheduled to be completed in October 2025, though the road itself could open earlier that year.  Progress on I-74 earned more publicity in 2022 with the opening of 7.5 more miles of the Winston-Salem Northern Beltway from US 311 (Exit 49) to NC

Interstate 605

Interstate 605 is a 27.4-mile freeway located in the Los Angeles Metropolitain Area.  Interstate 605 begins at Interstate 210 near Duarte and terminates at the Interstate 405/California State Route 22 junction to the south near the boundary to the city of Long Beach.  Interstate 605 is known as the San Gabriel River Freeway and has three unconstructed miles which would extend it south to California State Route 1 near Seal Beach.  Much of the corridor of Interstate 605 was built up from what was the original California State Route 35.  The blog cover photo is taken from the July/August 1964 California Highways & Public Works which featured the initial segment of Interstate 605 to open between Whittier Boulevard and Peck Road  Part 1; the history of the San Gabriel River Freeway and Interstate 605 The origin of what is now Interstate 605 begins during 1933 with the addition of Legislative Route Number 170 (LRN 170) to the State Highway System.  The original definition of LRN 170 was