State gives Bridge Hill, Ky. 393 a green light for expansion

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By Tracy Harris

After the state legislature approved a two-year, $4.5 billion road plan in April, a number of projects are set to begin in Oldham County.

Several projects will impact Oldham Reserve, the 1,000-acre business park owned by La Grange and Oldham County governments.

A project to extend Allen Lane will benefit both Oldham Reserve and alleviate traffic on Ky. 53. 

Allen Lane will be extended from Commerce Parkway, where it currently ends, over I-71 to New Moody Lane. 

Construction on the overpass will hopefully begin in the spring, according to Kentucky Transportation Cabinet officials.

The intersection of Ky. 146 and Allen Lane will also become easier to navigate, as the road will go underneath the railroad tracks.

The project includes widening Allen Lane to three lanes with a center turning lane and adding sidewalks. About $9.7 million is allocated for construction from federal funds.

Jim Urban, director of planning and development, said the overpass will likely be open to the public in 2015. 

About $12.5 million is allocated for construction of the overpass from state funds.

Members of the Oldham-La Grange Development Authority board, which oversees Oldham Reserve, are excited about the project.

“When we have bulldozers there, it’ll be a significant emotional event,” said OLDA chair Don Basham. 

OLDA board members are also excited about the allocation of funds for Ring Road, which will veer off New Moody Lane just south of Forrest Park Drive. The road will go south before turning east and connecting with Blakemore Lane at Ky. 53.

Urban said about $12.2 million is allocated for the project, including $10 million for construction. 

It is likely the road will be completed in phases — KYTC officials estimate $10 million isn’t enough to build the entire four-lane road.

Urban said the Ring Road and Allen Lane projects will eventually provide a La Grange bypass extending past Eagle Creek Golf Course.

A project to widen Ky. 53 from I-71 to Main Street is still on the horizon, Urban said, although the only funding for that project is through a grant for design work.

The project started in 2005 and has idled for several years, but Urban has pushed forward on design plans for recently and expects those plans to be completed in upcoming months.

The project would widen Ky. 53’s current four-lane area to include a turning lane at key intersections, including those at Crystal Drive, Parker Drive, Yager Avenue, Adams Street, Washington Street and Main Street.

A raised median will prevent left-hand turns into business driveways, which would help with traffic flow and prevent crashes.

However, business owners opposed to the plan could hinder right-of-way acquisition if funds are allotted for the project.

Upcoming road projects aren’t limited to La Grange, however. 

Other projects are planned in Buckner, Crestwood and Prospect.

In Buckner, Ky. 393 will receive a long-awaited expansion and realignment.

The road will become five lanes from I-71 to Ky. 146 and go underneath the railroad crossing at Ky. 393 and Ky. 146. From there, Ky. 393 will be realigned, with a new section of road running through the Clayton & Lambert property diagonally until it reconnects with the existing road near the John W. Black Community Center.

The new section of Ky. 393 will be three lanes with a center turning lane.

A separate road will run alongside Ky. 393 near Commerce Parkway to provide access to businesses between Commerce and Ky. 146.

According to KYTC spokesperson Andrea Clifford, design work for the project is nearly complete. Right-of-way acquisition is about halfway complete, Clifford said, but the remainder could take up to a year to finalize. 

The earliest construction could begin is likely late 2015, Clifford said. 

About $17 million is allocated for construction of the project.

Also planned for Buckner is a pedestrian and bicycling bridge to cross over I-71 near exit 17. 

The bridge will be parallel to the existing CSX railroad bridge and will reconnect two sections of Old La Grange Road.

Two projects are planned for Crestwood. 

One will reconstruct Ky. 22 to eliminate the dangerous Bridge Hill curve between Ky. 329 and Abbott Lane. 

The road will be expanded to three lanes with a center turning lane and the road will be rebuilt to the north to eliminate the curve. 

A right-of-way acquisition meeting was held in July and the KYTC is currently making offers on about 39 parcels of land that must be purchased for the project. 

Clifford estimates construction will not begin before late 2014, as right-of-way purchases and utility relocation must be completed first. 

About $10.2 million in state funds is allocated for project construction.

Also in Crestwood, the intersection of Ky. 22 and Ky. 329 will be improved by adding left turn lanes in all four directions. 

About $840,000 in federal funds are allocated for the project and construction could begin in 2014.

And in Prospect, traffic from the Oldham/Jefferson county line to Ridgemoor Drive, near Goshen Elementary, will be relieved after a center turning lane is added to U.S. 42. 

The expansion should eliminate the need for traffic signals at both River Bluff Road and Locust Circle.

Clifford said design for the project is complete but that KYTC expects right-of-way acquisition to take about 18 months because a large number of parcels must be purchased.

The earliest construction could begin is late 2015, she estimates. The current highway plan has $4 million allocated for the project.

Some Oldham County residents will also benefit from a Jefferson County project extending Old Henry Road from Bush Farm Road to Ky. 362, merging with Hawley Gibson Road.

Construction on that project could begin in 2015. About $9 million is allocated for the project.

For more information on road projects, visit transportation.ky.gov/district-5.