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Construction ahead

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By John Foster

Improvements to Oldham County’s roads will happen sooner than expected due to $420 million of federal stimulus dollars directed to road improvements in Kentucky. That money frees up money in the state budget, State Sen. Ernie Harris said. Harris, chair of the Senate Transportation Committee, said about $31 million will be directed to Oldham County in the next two years. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act will also fund more than $1 million worth of sidewalks and guardrails in Oldham County, and ensure that design of the East End bridge moves forward, Harris said. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act will pay for a portion of widening Ky. 22 from Chamberlain Lane to Murphy Lane, a route thousands of Oldham Countians use daily, Harris said.  Ky. 22 through Bridge Hill Plans to fix Bridge Hill on Ky. 22 have been in the works since the mid-1990s when the Department of Transportation first put in on the six-year plan. But is seems real progress will be in the near future. Unlike previous plans from the state, this year, the Ky. General Assembly dedicates money to purchasing right of way and relocating utilities.  In a best case scenario, construction could begin within two years, State Senator Ernie Harris said. “But that’s optimistic,” he said. Harris said fixing Bridge Hill was his top priority for Oldham County’s roads. The new road will be five lanes, somewhat straighter and with a new bridge, he said. The hill is the site of dozens of injuries a year, according to Oldham County Police Department statistics. The state budget dedicates $4.18 million for the section from Ky. 329 to Abbott Lane. A widening of Ky. 22 is planned from Abbott Lane to Ky. 393, but it is still in the design stages. Oldham County Greenway Construction has already begun on a portion of the Oldham County Greenway — bike and pedestrian path — southwest of La Grange. Money from the state highway plan — $1.32 million — has been dedicated to finish construction to the Jefferson County line in the next two years. About $787,000 from federal stimulus money will also pay for a pedestrian bridge over Interstate 71 parallel to Ky. 146. U.S. 42 beginning at Ridgemoor Drive Over the next two years, money will go toward design, right of way purchase and utility removal on U.S. 42 between the Jefferson County line and Ridgemoor Drive, with the intent to flatten out some of the hills and add a turn lane. Andrea Clifford, the public information officer for the Louisville District Department of Highways, said the current situation has short sight distances in some places and without a turn lane, turning left can be difficult. When cars start to line up behind the left turners, it creates increased potential for rear-end collisions, she said. Ky. 53 in La Grange Oldham County Planning and Development is in the process of designing a plan to alleviate congestion on Ky. 53. Public meetings are to follow. The legislature designated $1.12 million to that end. Harris said the goal is to reduce congestion without hurting businesses. Ky. 393 construction north of Interstate 71 The construction taking place on Ky. 393 over the past couple years will move north of the interstate in the next two years, with $9.31 million dedicated to widening the road to three lanes and extending it across Ky. 146, going around Clayton and Lambert and the Oldham County Animal Shelter, rejoining the existing Ky. 393 near Wendell Moore Park. railroad underpass A railroad underpass is planned for Allen Lane to the tune of $3.22 million.   E-mail us about this story at: jfoster@oldhamera.com