Interstate 29 construction in Council Bluffs reaches last major phase

Interstate construction is making steady progress in Council Bluffs
Published: Nov. 18, 2022 at 4:48 PM CST
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COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa. (WOWT) - Drivers taking Interstates 480 or 29 in Council Bluffs for the Thanksgiving holiday will notice some big changes.

The construction project on this stretch of the interstate system in Council Bluffs is about to enter its third year.

Since it began in early 2021, many changes have taken place near the 480 and 29 interchange.

More of those kicked in just a few days ago for drivers with the last major phase of the project beginning.

Let’s start with the positive: a new ramp connecting eastbound 480 with northbound 29 is now open for use.

“About a month ago we opened the 480 east to 29 south ramp. So now we have our full connection coming into Iowa from Omaha, coming out of downtown Omaha and being able to go both directions now.” said Austin Yates, Iowa DOT Traffic Engineer.

This alleviates a major headache for drivers.

However, another change will make for more challenges.

Southbound 29 is now closed from Avenue G all the way to 9th Avenue and it will remain that way through next fall.

Traffic will be detoured onto the frontage road, similar to what has already been happening through this stretch northbound.

In fact, the DOT used the experience of that northbound detour as a guide when preparing for the new one.

“We had a lot of issues with people following GPS and going through neighborhoods that we didn’t want them to go through. So we beefed up signing, we did a lot more outreach than we normally would have with the intent of keeping detoured traffic out of residential areas. From what we can tell, we’ve had pretty good success with that.” said Yates.

While the upcoming year will see several nighttime closures take place, the DOT says that this southbound closure is the last major one for this project.

By this time next year, this stretch of the interstate is scheduled to be reopened with construction headaches a thing of the past.

The recent lane closures along I-80 near Madison Avenue are also a part of this project.