During the environmental impact study phase, an economic impact study was conducted for the Pennsylvania Turnpike/I-95 Interchange Project. The purpose of the study was to examine the potential impacts of the proposed interchange on the economies of Bucks County and the Greater Philadelphia region, including five PA and four NJ counties. In addition, the study provides important information necessary for local, state, and national officials to make decisions on the viability of the proposed interchange. The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission released the study's findings at a press conference at the Bucks County Transportation Management Association.
The economic impact study was based on a year 2000 analysis of potential changes in employment, personal income, and business sales over the following time periods. Although time has elapsed since that study, the project being constructed is identical to that being planned at the time and the conservative economic trends and impact areas still apply. In fact, with most of the impacts being construction cost and income driven, an update of this study would surely produce even higher values respectively.
- 2000 thru 2015 - the proposed construction period (includes preliminary engineering)
- 2010 - the anticipated completion date for the interchange and toll plaza
- 2025 - the project's design year for handling future traffic
The potential changes in employment, personal income, and business sales would stem from the typical economic impacts of a highway interchange:
- Construction Spending - new construction dollars from federal and state sources
- Travel Cost Savings - savings from reduced travel distances, travel times, and accidents
- Market Attractiveness - new potential for Bucks County to be a premier office location and for the Greater Philadelphia region to capture additional tourism dollars
Regional Employment Changes, 2000-2025
Bucks County Employment Change, 2000-2025
The proposed interchange would also positively impact the region's quality of life which includes:
- Personal travel time
- Tax revenues
- Residential property values
- Health care and environmental costs
The Pennsylvania Economy League (PEL), an independent research organization, was hired by the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission to conduct the economic impact study. PEL's efforts were supported by the Economic Development Research Group (EDRG), a nationally recognized expert in economic impact analyses of transportation projects. PEL and EDRG met regularly with the Community Economic Impact Review Group (CEIRG) --an advisory committee of political, business, and civic leaders--that provided oversight and local perspective for the study.
You also may download the full report (60 pages) of the economic impact study for complete analyses and results, or its executive summary (20 pages) for study highlights.