When it pours, water rushes from Bieber Creek onto Forgedale Road at the intersection of Orchard Road in Rockland Township, causing dangerous conditions for commuters and locals alike.

"It's treacherous," Corey Delancey, 54, said Thursday, standing on the edge of the busy two-lane road set to be repaired next week. "This is a major road used for people to drive to work. It’s a problem when it rains and the water freezes on the road."

To alleviate the problem, a PennDOT maintenance crew will install a 5-foot-wide by 38-foot-long pipe under the roadway near the intersection of Forgedale and Orchard roads to drain the water from the creek before it flows onto the road.

The work will begin on Monday and be completed by Jan. 17.

During construction, Forgedale Road will be closed from Pricetown Road in Rockland Township to Bertolet Mill Road in Oley Township. Forgedale Road becomes Hoch Road in Oley Township.

Motorists will be detoured onto Pricetown, Lobachsville and Bertolet Mill roads.

An average of 4,096 vehicles drive daily on the tree-lined road, including many traveling to and from Berks County's largest employer, East Penn Manufacturing Co. Inc. in Lyons.

Delancey, a contractor who works on homes in the area, said he notices the traffic picks up every afternoon when shift workers leave East Penn.

"This road is a cut-through road," he said. "It gets really busy."

Michael Pott, Rockland roadmaster, said the creek spilled onto the road during the July 11 deluge that caused major flooding throughout Berks.

Alan D. Piper, Berks County transportation planner, said the pipe installation is a much-needed maintenance project.

"It's a fairly busy road," Piper said. "Anytime when you have frozen water on a road, it's a nuisance for anyone living there or driving by."

Matt Seidel, 20, of Rockland Township said that the water can be as deep as 3 inches on the road during major storms.

"I drive on Forgedale Road frequently to visit relatives in Boyertown," he said. "It's a main road used to go to (Route 73) toward Boyertown."

comments powered by Disqus