Committee plans future county highway projectsConstruction is underway on County Highway F, and Douglas County’s Transportation and Infrastructure Committee is making plans for more highway projects.
By: Shelley Nelson, Superior Telegram
Construction is underway on County Highway F, and Douglas County’s Transportation and Infrastructure Committee is making plans for more highway projects.
The panel Tuesday approved applications for federal funding and plans for county projects to repair additional county roads over the next two years.
That’s good news for people living in the Wascott area where the county will spend the next two years pulverizing and paving almost 13 miles of County Highway T from South Town Line Road to State Highway 35.
It’s always difficult to try to decide which roads to do when so many are in bad shape, said Highway Commissioner Paul Halverson. The process of determining the worst and those most likely to fail led him to the conclusion that County Highway T needs to be addressed next.
“The one that’s really jumping to the forefront is County Highway T in the southern portion of the county,” Halverson said. “We did reconstruct … from U.S. Highway 53 to just west of the Minong flowage a few years ago. It’s still in good condition there.”
However, the remainder of the 19-mile county highway that runs from Dairyland through Wascott is in rough shape and getting rougher, in part, because of logging trucks that are adding strain to the asphalt road.
“The pavement conditions have deteriorated rather rapidly,” Halverson said.
The panel approved a nearly $2.3 million plan to restore a 6.5 stretch from South Town Line Road to Chipmunk Hollow on County Highway T in 2014 and another $2.2 million project to repair a 6.3 mile stretch from State Highway 35 to South Town Line Road in 2015.
Halverson said he gets more complaints about the condition of Highway T than any other road in Douglas County.
“For this amount of money and this many miles, I think you’ve chosen a good project,” said Committee Chairwoman Kay Johnson. She said she also appreciates that upcoming highway projects will benefit people in her area.
Also getting attention in 2015 is a 2.5-mile stretch of County Highway D from Evans Lane to Elm Road. The plan calls for a $2.8 million reconstruction project. Design is expected to cost another $185,000. However, the plan compliments another project for which the county approved seeking federal funding to cover 80 percent of the costs.
Projects the county is seeking funding for includes reconstruction of County Highway D from County Highway B to Evans Lane, concrete reconstruction of County Highway Z from Lyman Lake Road to U.S. Highway 53, removing and grading the Soo Line Bridge on County Highway C and replacement of the Balsam Creek bridge on County Highway B.
Halverson said there is no guarantee the county will be successful in its funding requests, but the county would receive nothing if it didn’t apply.