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Detour in place on Route 611 in Monroe County

PennDOT estimates this section of Route 611 will be open after emergency work by the end of the spring.

DELAWARE WATER GAP, Pa. — A long row of concrete barriers lines the mountain along Route 611 in Delaware Water Gap.

PennDOT says crews have been hard at work, resetting more than 500 barriers after heavy rains washed out the road earlier this month.

For business owners like Lauren Chamberlain, the repair work is welcome news.

"We are beyond excited. The fact that we were able to get this moving so quickly that they recognized it as an emergency situation," Chamberlain said.

Three miles of Route 611 remain closed, starting at Mountain Road in the borough of Delaware Water Gap, stretching south into the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area.

PennDOT officials say once all the concrete barriers are reset, crews will repair four areas of the roadway.

Businesses in Portland are feeling the impacts of the road closure.

"We have a lot of business in there that usually gets a splurge of people during the summer months, and it's just been an issue with people not wanting to come around, not wanting to pay the tolls, not knowing that we're open," said Portland Mayor Heather Fischer.

All the business owners in Delaware Water Gap and those on the opposite side of the closure in Portland want people to know they're open for business.

"The traffic issues that we've seen and the lack of traffic that we've seen even just since they've closed it has been pretty detrimental to our business and the town," Chamberlain said. "So this is, it's amazing, and we're really excited that PennDOT really took it to the level where it's an emergency now."

"We are very, very, open. So we're waiting," Fischer said. We've had some people come. The business has picked up since the last press conference that we did. But for these guys to survive in these small towns, we need them to come. I mean, we are the bedrock."

The PennDOT detour to get around the three-mile stretch is 30 miles long.

Pending availability of materials and weather, PennDOT estimates this section of Route 611 will be open by the end of the spring.

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