Nebraska Highway 2 from Grand Island to Cairo is slated to be repaired.
The project is listed as one of many being planned for 2021-22 by the Nebraska Department of Transportation Highway Commission.
“We’ve got a lot of roads that need a lot of work,” NDOT District Engineer Wesley Wahlgren said. “If you’ve driven Grand Island to Cairo, you know what condition that’s in.”
The 12.5-mile resurfacing project is expected to cost roughly $9.2 million.
NDOT District 4 includes 17 central Nebraska counties, including Hall, Hamilton, Adams and Merrick counties.
Several other projects are planned for the two-year project period, Wahlgren said.
— I-80 Aurora, east and west ($8.7 million)
— U.S. Highways 6 and 34 in Hastings ($9 million)
— U.S. 6 from Harvard to Sutton ($5.7 million)
— U.S. 30 from Gibbon to Shelton ($4.9 million)
— U.S. 34, York west ($7.5 million)
— U.S. 281 in Ayr, north and south ($9.1 million)
— N-74, south junction at N-14 ($4.1 million)
A focus for NDOT is the condition of the highways.
“Most of these roads are needing work,” Wahlgren said. “The surface condition is showing its age.”
For I-80 bridges south of Grand Island, a high-friction surface treatment project aims to reduce accidents, he said.
Aggregate is applied to the bridge pavement using a polymer binder to restore tire friction so motorists can maintain control in wet driving conditions.
“We’ve had a lot of people that are driving too fast for some conditions,” Wahlgren said. “We’re going to put a high-friction surface course on the bridges, extending out from the bridges.”
U.S. Highway 30 bridges in Grand Island are also a part of the NDOT five-year plan for District 4, he said.
“We’re going to replace the joints and (bridge surface) patch, and do an asphalt overlay with a membrane,” Wahlgren said. “We’re also going to put a small wall down the center to keep people from crossing over between the two directions.”
A public hearing is scheduled for Oct. 23 in Hastings for the Highway Commission to provide information on upcoming projects and solicit public input on potential projects.
The NDOT benefits from community involvement, Wahlgren said.
“Some of our best ideas come from the public,” he said. “They may have other areas they want looked at, or other roads they want looked at, and we’re given some ideas for future projects.”
This year has been busy for District 4, Wahlgren said.
“We’ve still got quite a few projects ongoing,” he said. “I need a longer construction year. We’ve got a lot of roads that need a lot of work.”
Driver safety is also a priority for the NDOT, which aims to get more people to wear seat belts and no cellphone use while driving.
“Fatalities are running higher than what we’d like to see,” Wahlgren said. “Anytime there’s a fatality, or a serious injury, that’s a problem. We want to try to limit that as much as possible.”
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