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2017 was a year for enhancing the future of Wisconsin roadways

The Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) announce their “Year in Review” of state and federal projects that were completed in 2017.  WisDOT continued to focus on the effective use of resources, cost saving opportunities, and performance improvement. Mobility, accountability, preservation, safety, and service continue to be the departments’ performance goals.

“Under Governor Walker’s leadership, WisDOT is operating under a new paradigm. Governor Walker directed WisDOT to reinvest let savings to advance a number of highway projects, identify cost savings and efficiencies, and effectively use its resources while maintaining a focus on safety,” said Dave Ross, WisDOT Secretary. “We remain committed to continuing to move Wisconsin forward in 2018.”

In Fiscal Year 2017, 600 miles of State Trunk Highway and local highways were improved and work was initiated or completed to rehabilitate or replace 387 deficient state and local bridges. In all, more than $946 million in construction projects on state and local road systems were contracted through the Department of Transportation.

Southeast Region project highlights for 2017 include:

Zoo Interchange (Milwaukee County): Major milestones where reached during the ongoing Zoo Interchange reconstruction. During 2017, two new system ramps were completed and reopened to the public. The new westbound I-94 lanes from the core of the interchange out to the project limits were also opened to traffic with the connections to and from WIS 100 fully open as well. Work completed during the year is allowing the completion date for the Core of the Interchange to be set for late August of 2018.

Hoan Bridge (Milwaukee County): Crews finished the final season of repainting the bridge steel along one of Milwaukee’s most recognizable landmarks. The Hoan Bridge handles about 40,000 vehicles per day and required 3 million square feet of painting.

I-794 Lakefront Gateway (Milwaukee County): This project included multiple interchange ramp realignments linking Milwaukee’s downtown, lakefront and Third Ward District. A two-and-a-half acre site opened by the ramp realignments made room for the planned construction of a high-rise building and adjacent pedestrian access to downtown and the lakefront. 

Marquette Interchange (Milwaukee County): A new polymer overlay was applied throughout the interchange located in downtown Milwaukee. This high tensile strength application was used to seal, protect, and extend the life of the bridge decks. Minor closeout items to take place in 2018. 

I-94 (Waukesha County): Repaired a section of pavement along I-94, from the Waukesha County Line to WIS 16. To safely implement this improvement while maximizing traffic flow for motorists, most of the project work was conducted at night.

WIS 50 (Walworth County): WIS 50, in downtown Delavan, received spot reconstruction improvements and was also resurfaced to help address congestion and delays, and to update pavement conditions.

WIS 145 (Washington County): Roadway conditions were updated along WIS 145, from Mequon Road to County P, in the village of Germantown. In addition, spot safety improvements were made such as updating the existing guardrail at the bridge over the Menomonee River, as well as replacing the railroad crossing on Pilgrim Road.

WIS 175 (Washington County): Crews resurfaced WIS 175, from Maple Road to Beechwood Industrial Court, and from Polk Street to WIS 60. Safety improvements at major intersections were implemented including a new roundabout at WIS 175 and Lannon Road.

US 45 (Kenosha County): This project resurfaced US 45 from the Illinois State Line to 86th Street, and reconstructed US 45 from 86th Street to WIS 50 near the town of Bristol. Various intersections were realigned and improved throughout the corridor, including the addition of Emergency Vehicle Preemption (EVP) detection.

US 14 (Walworth County): A resurfacing project that had an original duration of three months, was completed in one to mitigate traffic impacts in the downtown district of the village of Walworth. Crews worked with local businesses along the town square to coordinate a full closure of the roadway to expedite construction operations.

WIS 165 (Kenosha County): This two-year project rehabilitated approximately three miles of WIS 165, from I-94 to WIS 31. It also consisted of building a new bridge over the Des Plaines River, while rehabilitating the existing bridge. This work created twin bridges to accommodate lane expansions.

WIS 120 (Walworth County): Updated roadway conditions by resurfacing WIS 120, from the Illinois State Line to Willow Road, and rehabilitating the bridge deck over Nippersink Creek. In addition, spot safety improvements were made such as updating existing beam guards and installing concrete barrier under the Wisconsin and Southern Railroad bridge. 

WIS 36 and County Y (Racine County): This project improved the overall safety of the intersection by adjusting the alignment of the left turn bays to alleviate sight distance issues, and by installing more visible traffic signals.

WIS 16 (Waukesha County): This project rehabilitated WIS 16 from County P to I-94, replaced beam guard, added new signage, and incorporated new pavement markings. As a separate project in 2018, cable barriers will be installed along the median throughout the corridor.

Park and Rides (Southeast Region): This project rehabilitated 10 park and rides around southeastern Wisconsin and required constant communication with transit services and users, summer events, and festivals.

 I-41 and Capitol Drive (Milwaukee County): Work was completed over the summer months that resurfaced the connecting ramps in this interchange in addition to the installation of new traffic control devices. The timely completion of the work is allowing the route to be used as a detour route for work in I-41. 

Watertown Plank Road Bridges (Milwaukee County): Two bridges were rehabilitated along Watertown Plank Road that spanned Underwood Creek. This project is removing and replacing the existing bridge decks while making updates to the existing girders. Work continues this winter with an anticipated opening in fall 2018.

I-41 Nor-X-Way (Waukesha County): The project centers around replacing a small bridge on both the I-41/US 45 southbound entrance ramp and on the I-41/US 45 mainline near the village of Menomonee Falls. To safely implement this improvement while maximizing traffic flow for motorists, most of the project work was conducted at night. Crews will return next construction season to finish the work.

I-94 North/South County K Crossroads (Racine County): County K was reconstructed approximately ¾ mile east and west of the I-94 ramps. Improvements included adding traffic signals at all four legs of the County K and East Frontage Road Intersection, and replacing the existing stops signs for the north and south movements. Work is scheduled to be complete in spring 2018.

WIS 50 Bridge Flooding (Kenosha County): WisDOT staff and State Patrol worked with multiple government and law enforcement agencies on various efforts to ensure a coordinated response to the flooding emergency that hit southeastern Wisconsin in July. This included helping with short-term and long-term state highway closures, and detour routes. One of the most impacted highways was WIS 50 at the Fox River in New Munster. After historic water levels receded, crews inspected the bridge to ensure safety, rebuilt washed out shoulders, and immediately began designing the new elevated bridge to be constructed in 2018.

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