Interstates 80-76 junction work to begin soon

Interstate 80 roadwork graphic
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NORTH PLATTE, Neb. (AP) -- Grading work is expected to begin after Labor Day on reconfiguration of the Interstate 80-Interstate 76 junction in western Nebraska.

Nebraska Transportation Department engineer Gary Thayer told the Nebraska Highway Commission at its meeting Friday in North Platte that the $50 million, 2½-year project is designed to make it safer and easier to navigate the array of roads and ramps 5 miles (8.1 kilometers) west of Big Springs.

The North Platte Telegraph reports that one of the original design problems being addressed is the sharp left-hand curve eastbound I-80 truckers had to handle if they wanted to merge with southwest-bound I-76 into Colorado.

Thayer says the project will include a "smart work zone" with message boards alerting drivers approaching in all directions to slow down.