By Mike DeNardo

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Ben Franklin Bridge commuters should be able to breathe a sigh of relief next week, when the latest phase of PATCO track work comes to an end.

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Since August, westbound drivers on the Ben Franklin Bridge have been squeezed to three or even two lanes, and since Memorial Day, PATCO has run with gaps of up to a half-hour between trains.

Things should all get better Wednesday morning, October 22, when the lane closures end and PATCO resumes a closer-to-normal schedule.

“Once Wednesday morning rolls around, during the week we will have the regular schedule back,” says DRPA CEO John Hanson.

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Hanson knows that riders and drivers have endured a lot since this phase of PATCO track reconstruction started:

“It hasn’t been easy on anybody. And we’re very sorry about that. But the fact is, it was very important to get these tracks finished.”

The job still has more than a year to go, though.

Hanson says there will still be some weeeknd train delays and traffic lane closures as the PATCO signal and communications systems on the bridge are rebuilt.

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