Project On Busy Highway Updated

Highway 75 expansion update in Cass County. The project remains well ahead of schedule. The 2013 construction year takes the work to three-quarters complete.

The opening of the south 1.5 miles last week gets construction workers and traffic cones off that portion and puts motorists on four lanes of travel from near School Road south to the traffic lights at Avenue B/Oak Hill Road.

The Cassgram reports that as weather permits, construction on highway lanes and the two remaining Bay Road on/off ramps will continue this fall on the north portion.

The travel configuration from School Road north will remain as it is now through the winter.

Work on the two bridges over the railroad tracks and work on the new northbound Platte River Bridge will continue through the winter, says project manager Rick Fisher of the Nebraska Department of Roads. Concrete can be poured on bridges through the winter as crews can insulate it and heat it.

One pier remains to be placed for the northbound Platte River Bridge. Plans are to pour the deck on the bridge in the spring. That bridge will then open with head-to-head traffic and the attention will turn to the southbound Platte River Bridge at some point in 2014. The foundation of that bridge remains in good condition and the southbound bridge lanes will only be getting a deck rehab which shouldn’t take more than four months next year, allowing it to be open by next fall, says Fisher.

“In the spring we’ll start paving between the bridges,” he says.

Hawkins Construction is the general contractor. Hawkins was one of six bidders when the bids were received in January of 2012. The $61.4 million project started in April of 2012.

The completion date is on pace to arrive over a year earlier than the contract specifications.

In late March of this year, the project status report was at 58% complete. As of last week, that status was at 74% complete at 42% of the contract timeline, says Fisher.

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