Neilson introduces resolution to extend Gov. Shapiro’s emergency declaration

Says that resolution will help ensure the safe and speedy reopening of I-95

State Rep. Ed Neilson, D-Phila., chair of the PA House Transportation Committee, has introduced House Resolution 154, which seeks to extend Gov. Josh Shapiro’s emergency proclamation for the safe and prompt rebuilding of Interstate 95, one of the busiest highways in Pennsylvania, carrying an average of 160,000 vehicles daily.

On June 11, a tanker truck fire erupted underneath a northbound and southbound bridge on Interstate 95 in Northeast Philadelphia. The fire led to the collapse of the northbound bridge and severe compromise of the southbound bridge, causing all lanes of Interstate 95 to be closed in both directions between the Woodhaven and Aramingo exits.

“This has severely disrupted a major artery in the entire region,” Neilson said at a House Transportation Committee meeting on June 12.

On June 12, Shapiro issued an emergency disaster proclamation to obtain federal funding and expedite the demolition and reconstruction of this portion of Interstate 95. The emergency proclamation will expire in 21 days due to a constitutional amendment added to the state constitution initiated by House and Senate Republicans during COVID-19 to prevent supposed overreach by former Gov. Tom Wolf.

“We need to bypass all red tape to get I-95 moving again,” Neilson said. “We need help from the federal government to do that and provide funding for the safe reopening of one of the busiest roads in Pennsylvania.”

Neilson’s resolution would ensure that the commonwealth can continue to receive the emergency resources it needs until this portion of Interstate 95 is fully reconstructed.