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Archive for Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Two-way traffic finally to resume on North Second Street after eight months of detours

Traffic backs up over the Kansas River bridge Tuesday evening from downtown into North Lawrence, as reconstruction continues at the intersection of North Second and Locust streets. Because the roadblocks are scheduled to remain until March 26, the Kansas Turnpike has agreed to wait until April 5 to close its East Lawrence interchange — a move to preserve another access for emergency vehicles into North Lawrence.

Traffic backs up over the Kansas River bridge Tuesday evening from downtown into North Lawrence, as reconstruction continues at the intersection of North Second and Locust streets. Because the roadblocks are scheduled to remain until March 26, the Kansas Turnpike has agreed to wait until April 5 to close its East Lawrence interchange — a move to preserve another access for emergency vehicles into North Lawrence.

March 31, 2010, 4:15 p.m. Updated March 31, 2010, 6:14 p.m.

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Construction project to close Lawrence interchange

Another road construction project will begin early Monday in North Lawrence. The project will close the east Lawrence interchange for the next several months. Enlarge video

North Lawrence traffic to open Thursday

Two-way traffic to and from North Lawrence will once again be open Thursday. The construction has been going on since July of 2009. Enlarge video

For the first time in more than eight months, motorists will be able to drive north through a torn-up North Lawrence intersection without stopping, turning or otherwise wondering when the path will reopen.

The opening is expected by late afternoon Thursday, said Chuck Soules, the city’s public works director.

One lane of traffic — each way — will be open on North Second Street through the Locust Street intersection. However, no left turns will be allowed off North Second onto Locust.

But traffic inconveniences in North Lawrence aren’t over.

Beginning Monday:

• The Kansas Turnpike will close its East Lawrence interchange — Exit 204 — for seven months of reconstruction as part of an ongoing $130 million project. Blockades go up at 7 a.m. Monday.

• The Kansas Department of Transportation will reduce traffic to one lane over Mud Creek bridge along U.S. Highway 24-40, east of Lawrence Municipal Airport. The restriction will be in place from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays through mid-April, then 24 hours a day through late fall, the expected completion of the $1.5 million repair project.

In Lawrence, the intersection at North Second and Locust has been closed to northbound traffic since July 30, as drivers leaving downtown have been steered onto a detour that includes Elm, North Third, Locust and Lyon streets.

The work is part of an ongoing $2.5 million reconstruction project that includes adding turn lanes, improving drainage and installing a new waterline.

Comments

d_prowess 4 years ago

With the East Lawrence exit closed, when will Iowa have all four lanes open again? The southbound lane closure is a real pain and traffic always backed up. I can only assume it will get worse now this this being a main avenue for traffic to get to the turnpike!

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thebigspoon 4 years ago

Why can't they coordinate the turnpike closing with when BOTH south bound lanes are open ? I am sure it wouldn't be that big of a deal to postpone the turnpike job a month or so until that could happen ? I can't even imagine the traffic jam going South into Lawrence now with all the traffic having to go that way instead of having the turnpike to use it as an alternate route.

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jackbinkelman 4 years ago

Just drive past the turnpike exit to the next right turn and head east to Linwood Rd. turn left at Eudora exit. to go east on turnpike. I don't know about heading west.

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webmocker 4 years ago

LarryNative (anonymous) says…

"Just in time for the I-70 exit to close. Nice planning dumbf*cks."

What would be better planning? Are you suggesting it would have been better to have the I-70 exit closed at the same time the detour was in place?

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wprop 4 years ago

The street could have been open two weeks ago, had workers been in place......many afternoons they left early....nearby turnpike workers could be seen at 7 PM....why do they lie to us......... we can see them doing nothing....this project has cost us millions in lost time and customers.........pitiful ........fire chuck Souless.........

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KansasPerson 4 years ago

I am so glad that this isn't an April Fool's headline!

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sandrat 4 years ago

Thanks for the update, Mark Fagan. Here are some other things I'd like to know:

When will the I-70 bridges over North Seventh will be completed so they can repave and/or lay more gravel and reopen that road.

Are they planning to repave all of North Third from Locust to North Street, or -- in an ideal world filled with free beer and unicorns -- maybe strip off the asphalt and go back to the brick pavers?

Are the water pumps and pipes ready for the spring rains, or do they still have more work to do? I assume it was their intention to install the new large pipe all the way from the railroad bridge to the river.

Finally, what is the latest estimate on completion of the North Second and Locust Street intersection project? I wants me some turning lanes.

Thanks.

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amac 4 years ago

ahhh, I'm so glad the detour will soon be over. If you choose to continue travelling 3rd street, pretty please slow down.

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d_prowess 4 years ago

So you still need to take the detour if you are going to Johnny's since you can't turn left after crossing the bridge. Any idea on how long until that restriction is done?

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flamingoroad 4 years ago

When does the work on Mud Creek Bridge begin?

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hail2oldku 4 years ago

It was kind of planned that way LarryNative. If they had closed both at the same time the easiest access to North Lawrence would have been through Eudora or Perry. You seem to be the dumb**** here.

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barrypenders 4 years ago

Brand new roads! Glorious concrete with ample drainage! Spectacular engineering achievements that is cutting edge!

Same 'size' hole under the 'Tracks' to drive through....

Stimulus, Size Matters, and Posercare live unprecedented

Darwin bless us

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wowiekt08 4 years ago

Thank goodness I won't have to take that horrible detour anymore!

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thepianoman 4 years ago

YIPPPEEEE....IT'S FINALLY HERE!! NO MORE driving through pot holes the size of craters......no more going over those horrendously rough RR tracks......PRAISE THE LORD.....Drinks on me at Johnny's!!!!!!

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JeepTJ 4 years ago

Never thought I would say it but here it goes...Thank God for the Tonganoxie turnpike exit #212.

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bearded_gnome 4 years ago

good job Mark!

judging by driver behavior during the detour, I expect at least 15% of drivers will drive slowly or stay stopped inappropriately, because of the frightening change of clearing the detour! LOL.

just glad to see this is getting done!

and yes, n. 3rd is in 3rd world condition.

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Steven Gaudreau 4 years ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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tanaumaga 4 years ago

how much does the city owe johnny's in lost revenue?

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mfagan 4 years ago

Thanks, somebodynew. I'll be interested to see how it works tomorrow. I'm sure there will be some relieved folks rolling through there... - Mark Fagan Transportation reporter

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somebodynew 4 years ago

Wow, mfagan - you are all over it !!!! Congrats for having the info already.

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mfagan 4 years ago

Hello, sandrat, I have the info you were asking about: 1. Traffic on North Second that is heading north into the intersection will be able to turn right onto Locust, but will NOT be able to turn left into Johnny's. 2. Traffic on North Second that is heading south into the intersection will be able to turn right into Johnny's but will NOT be able to turn left onto Locust. 3. Traffic leaving Johnny's will be able to turn left onto North Second (to go under the railroad tracks), go straight (onto Locust) or turn right (toward downtown). 4. Traffic on Locust will be able to turn left onto North Second (toward downtown), go straight (into Johnny's) or turn right (and go under the railroad tracks). That's the word from the city engineer. I'd sought that very information earlier this afternoon, but had not included it in the original story. Again: The detour will be expected to remain in place until late Thursday afternoon, as crews move barriers and signs and other traffic controls. Thanks for asking, sandrat. Hope the opening of the lane makes things better... I'm assured that city crews will start repairing the damaged roads on the detour quite soon. Potholes will be repaired first, with more extensive repairs to come later this spring or summer... - Mark Fagan Transportation reporter

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sandrat 4 years ago

Question for the LJWorld: will the city allow turning left across traffic onto Locust Street from 2nd Street, or will that be prohibited for the time being? Hopefully they will not allow it, but who knows. If traffic starts backing up because someone is heading to Johnny's, everyone will be getting ticked off for a totally new reason.

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OldEnuf2BYurDad 4 years ago

I'll probably go across and turn right just out of habit for another month.

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