Archive for Wednesday, February 9, 2005

Hearing set on 24-40 interchange

February 9, 2005

The Kansas Department of Transportation will host a public hearing later this month to update area residents on the progress of a $43.1 million project to replace the Kansas Highway 7 and U.S. Highway 24-40 interchange.

The public hearing is scheduled from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Feb. 22 at the department of transportation office at 650 N. K-7 in Bonner Springs. Officials from municipalities in nearby cities will be briefed on the project earlier that day, from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Department of transportation spokesman Joe Blubaugh said the public hearing will address details such as land easements and road rights of way that will affect nearby property owners.

"Some things may change, but this is pretty accurate as to how they're going to be impacted," Blubaugh said.

In June 2003, state transportation officials announced KDOT would begin work to replace the interchange, a cloverleaf design built in 1956, with a semi-cloverleaf that would help relieve traffic congestion and make travel more accommodating and safer.

As part of the same project, the department of transportation is planning to improve and widen 24-40 to six lanes, three heading in each direction, from N. 142nd Street, near the Leavenworth-Wyandotte counties line, to North 118th Street.

The project will be let for construction in early 2006, and roadwork is slated to begin the following spring. It has a target completion date of early 2007.

State transportation officials said the improvements are designed to meet expected 20-year traffic volumes. A recent traffic study indicates as many as 22,700 vehicles travel near the Kansas Highway 7 interchange per day and as many as 14,000 vehicles travel 24-40.

Those numbers could balloon to more than 54,000 cars near the K-7 interchange and 43,000 on 24-40 per day by 2026. Given current and expected growth in Leavenworth and Wyandotte counties, the interchange and 24-40 will not be able to accommodate an increase in traffic volume, transportation officials said.

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