Construction crews haven’t even removed the first slabs of pavement, but a project to rebuild the busy 23rd and Iowa intersection already has gotten bumpy.
Bids for the project recently came in about $1 million over budget. City commissioners at their meeting Tuesday approved the extra costs and pulled the extra money out of the city’s infrastructure sales tax account.
Plans call for construction work to begin in May and last until mid-November. Once underway, motorists should prepare for a series of obstacles at the intersection. The intersection will remain open to traffic in all directions, but often times motorists will be funneled down to one lane in each direction.
When completed, the intersection will include dual left-turn lanes for all four corners of the intersection, reconfigured right-turn lanes for west, south and northbound traffic, pedestrian-friendly medians and all new concrete pavement.
Only two construction companies bid on the project. The low bid came from Amino Brothers Company for $3.7 million.
City officials also are moving ahead with a project at the other end of Iowa Street. The city will open bids on April 22 for a project to rebuild the intersection of Sixth and Iowa streets. The project is expected to start in mid-May. An estimated completion date hasn’t been announced yet, but it likely will stretch through the summer months.
When completed, the project will include two through-lanes and a dedicated left-turn lane for westbound traffic turning off of Sixth Street onto Iowa. Currently, the intersection has just two lanes, and neither of them are a dedicated left-turn lane. Other improvements will include a new right-turn lane for motorists turning east off of Iowa onto Sixth Street, new sidewalks and an improved shared use path on the north side of the intersection.