Leavenworth County has four among the hundreds of transportation projects announced this week for the next two fiscal years.
Leavenworth County has four among the hundreds of transportation projects announced this week for the next two fiscal years. The announcement came Wednesday from the Kansas Department of Transportation. The 430 projects scheduled for 2013 and 2014 were part of the KDOT’s most recent 10-year comprehensive transportation plan, known as T-WORKS. In terms of the number of projects, they are primarily light and heavy road preservation, which KDOT officials said has been the department’s focus as a result of fewer available funds. “But there are also some big projects that will expand capacity on some of the state’s busiest corridors and spur economic development,” said Mike King, state transportation secretary. The projects together are worth an estimated $1.1 billion and will affect 1,600 miles of highway and 209 bridges and interchanges. Among them are three different modernization projects, all located near Basehor. One is an estimated $1.2 million worth of improvements to U.S. Highway 24 from 155th Street to 158th Street; another is the modernization of 155th Street from U.S. 24 to Wolfcreek Parkway, also valued at $1.2 million; and the final a modernization of U.S. 24 from 158th Street to Wolfcreek Parkway in Basehor. All three projects are scheduled to be let in April next year. One light preservation project in the county is also scheduled under KDOT’s stated schedule — 2.81 miles on U.S. Highway 73 beginning about 320 feet north of the junction of U.S. 73 and Kansas Highway 92 and steadily moving north. Information from KDOT indicates that a majority of the programmed funding — about $633 million — is earmarked for a small number of expansion projects, including on Interstate 435 at the Kansas Highway 10 junction in Johnson County and on K-10 in Douglas County. Leavenworth County Commission Chairman John Flower said he saw a message in the distribution of the funding and of participation in KDOT and Mid-America Regional Council committees, as well as local planning. “I think it does highlight the need to be on the list,” he said. The projects can be viewed by county or route on the T-WORKS website, http://kdotapp.ksdot.org/TWorks/, or viewed in its entirety on the KDOT website at www.ksdot.org under “Recent News Releases.”