By Conrad Dudderar
Senior Staff Writer
Contractor crews are making “great progress” on the first phase of the State Highway 4 project as they start rebuilding the well-traveled roadway, a group of Yukon-area leaders were told this week.
City Manager Jim Crosby, in his report at Tuesday morning’s Yukon Legislative Breakfast, updated attendees on work being done on the Oklahoma Department of Transportation (ODOT) project. SH-4 will become a “super-two lane”, 24-foot-wide road with 8-foot shoulders.
Motorists should expect lower speed limits along various stretches of SH-4 for several years as project construction proceeds.
After the state highway is widened in Yukon city limits between SH-66 and Wilshire Boulevard, work will begin in Oklahoma City limits – from Wilshire north to N.W. Highway (SH-3).
“It’s going to be a long process to get that road improved,” Crosby said. “It’s really going to be a godsend when we get it done.”
Manhattan Road & Bridge of Tulsa was awarded a $13.1 million state contract for the SH-4 project’s first phase between Wagner Road and Wilshire in Yukon city limits.
“They’re doing great work and moving forward very quickly,” Crosby reported this week. “The weather has been really great … and we’re hoping the spring rains won’t slow them down any.”
Motorists traveling along SH-4 have had to adjust to a reduced 35 miles-per-hour speed limit in the construction zone.
ODOT spokeswoman Lisa Shearer-Salim said the largest impact during phase-one construction will be later this spring when crews start work at the SH-4/Wilshire intersection, where left-turn bays will be added.
The current phase two is expected to take 1-1/2 to two years to complete.
Then, phase two will begin – from Wagner Road (at the North Canadian River bridge) to SH-66. The City of Yukon already has started the process to acquire rights-of-way from property owners for phase two construction.
Yukon is responsible for a portion of engineering and utility relocation costs as part of its share of the state transportation project.
NEW LEFT-TURN LANES
Yukon’s city manager updated Legislative Breakfast attendees on another high-profile transportation project – this one done ahead of schedule.
The installation of left-turn lanes to ease traffic congestion on Health Center Parkway/West End Pointe Drive at the Garth Brooks Boulevard intersection was completed this week.
“It’s greatly needed,” Crosby said. “It was a three-month project, but they got through in two.”
The City of Yukon’s contractor, Brewer Construction Oklahoma, finished the work in two months to install the turn lanes and new traffic signal poles. Some 90 days were allotted in Brewer’s $293,572.55 contract, but the project was placed on a fast track.
With so much growth along Yukon’s busy commercial district south of Interstate 40, the city council approved the turn-lane project largely for safety reasons.