Skip to main content

I-74/US 311 Freeway Progress for July, Part 2

As indicated in the previous post, I found several new areas to observe progress on construction of the 'US 311 Bypass' from Spencer Road to US 220, that I decided to break this report into two parts, and will do the same on my web page later this week.

I. Design-Build Project from Spencer Road to US 220, Due to Open in Late 2012:
A. Spencer Road
This is the beginning of the Design-Build contract won by Barnhill Construction last year. The first photo looks back at the end of the previous contract:
The water truck is there I believe to water the cleared roadbeds to prevent too much dust from blowing around. Believe me, it happens, Weekend watering, I guess, is not in the contract.
The photo below looks south from Spencer Road, showing some clearing having gone on in the distance, but not near Spencer Road...
But, it appears this will not be the case for long...
There were at least 8 earth moving vehicles parked just to the south of the road, ready to start digging.

B. Banner Whitehead Road
This is one of the three new sites suggested to me to check out. Approaching the construction zone, one doesn't see any work going on immediately:
However, where the freeway will cross, I assume over the road, you can see clearing going on to the right, heading back towards US 311:
And demolition going on to the left side of the road:
The road, heading south on 311, is a left just before the 311 Flea Market complex (what are they going to change the name too?)

C. Current US 311 Interchange
They are making good progress on the road bridge, but need to do something about the railroad tracks too. Here's the latest view entering the construction area for the bridge and interchange, parts of the new bridge can be seen in the center of the photo:
As one gets closer, one can clearly now see the new roadbed being built to access the bridge:
Here's a quick view, while driving by, of the progress building the bridge itself:
This final photo shows where the new alignment will meet the current roadway.
The intersection ahead on the left marks where the westbound I-74 on and off ramps will be located, the eastbound, before the bridge, will also both be north of the current US 311 because of the railroad right-of-way on the other side of the highway.

D. Plainfield Road
Another of the new locations. Here they are clearing and excavating so that a bridge can be built for the road over the freeway. They have already put in a temporary road so that the bridge construction and excavation can begin and traffic on the road maintained:
Clearing has gone on mostly too the south, where both the future freeway bed and the construction vehicle access road (on the right) can be seen:
The clearing goes all the way to Heath Dairy Road, our next stop, whose bridge you can barely make out in the distance. They are making progress in excavating for the bridge here as well:
The excavation is almost up to the temporary road itself. Hopefully they will stabilize the area before the next big thunderstorm.

E. Heath Dairy Road
First a photo looking north back to our previous location:
As for the building of the bridge here, it must have been the first to be designed, because it looks mostly complete:
It appears that only the road deck and sides need to be completed, notice there are construction workers here even on a 95 degree Sunday. The next photo looks at the view under the bridge:
This is looking southeast toward the US 220 interchange, the roadbed appears to have been cleared all the way between the two locations. There still needs to be some progress on aligning the old road with the new bridge. This is the view on the east side:
While this is the view looking at the west end of what will be the new roadway:
F. The US 220 Interchange
More progress had been made in the last month than was seen in June. Approaching the construction zone from the south:
One can see progress in making the ramp that will carry I-74 West traffic:
Also some progress can be seen on the ramp bridge along the east side:
Approaching on US 220 South, progress is seen on the sides of the two ramp bridges:
Here's a closeup of the second bridge siding and the grading up to it:
A wider view of progress along US 220 North can be seen from the southbound lanes:
It doesn't appear support beams for any of the bridges will be installed very soon. Probably not by my next blog entry on the I-74/US 311 freeway, which will either be in late August or early September.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Check the box: Interstate 495 to 87 conversion administratively approved

The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials have recently approved North Carolina's application to remove the short-lived Interstate 495 and future I-495 from Raleigh to Rocky Mount.  This administrative move most likely will result in North Carolina signing Interstate 87 and Future I-87 on the entire corridor in the near future.

Approved in 2013, Interstate 495 was first signed in 2014 along US 64 from Interstate 440 in Raleigh to Interstate 540 in Knightdale.  The remaining segment of highway to Rocky Mount was signed as Future Interstate 495.  However, in 2016, North Carolina's congressional legislators were able to get language in the 2015 FAST ACT designating the US 64/US 13/US 17 corridor from Raleigh to Norfolk as an Interstate.  In 2016, the FHWA and AASHTO designated this entire corridor (including the existing Interstate and Future 495) as Interstate 87.  (NCDOT had applied for Interstate 89 along this route.)

It is currently unknown when t…

The story on how the unbuilt US 40 Expressway in Brownsville took 40 years to complete.

For nearly four decades, the four lane US 40 just east of Brownsville came to an abrupt end - shown in the photo above - at Grindstone Road in Redstone Township.   In the late 1960s, what was then the Pennsylvania Division of Highways (PennDOH) extended a new four lane alignment of US 40 eastwards from Broadway Street slightly over one mile to Grindstone Road where an incomplete diamond interchange was built.  Earlier in the decade, PennDOH had built a four lane US 40 in Washington County into Brownsville complete with a new crossing over the Monongahela River known as the Lane Bane Bridge.  This new highway and bridge allowed US 40 to bypass the older Intercounty Bridge and downtown Brownsville. 

After this new highway opened, nothing would happen to it for nearly forty years.  US 40 traffic would use the ramps for this planned diamond interchange and then jog on Grindstone Road briefly before continuing towards Uniontown on the original National Road. 
What is unknown (at least to…

Starrucca Viaduct

Even older than the Tunkhannock Viaduct is the Starrucca Viaduct, built in 1848. Located in the far northeastern Pennsylvania borough of Lanesboro, this impressive bridge carried the New York and Erie Railroad over a valley as well as the Starrucca Creek and is currently the oldest stone arch railroad in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania (1). An engineering marvel of its time, and even in today's world, the 1080 foot length, 100 foot height and 25 foot width (2) of the viaduct is simply spectacular. Using local materials such as Pennsylvania bluestone, the Starrucca Viaduct has stood the test of time.With a price estimated at $325,000 in 1848 dollars, the bridge was one of the largest and costliest stone arch railroad bridges built in America at its time (3) . However, the very material that made it expensive to build gave the Starrucca Viaduct much durabilitycompared to other viaducts built in that era.

I've happened to check out the Starrucca Viaduct on a few occasions sin…