Highway expansion that will reduce congestion, increase capacity and improve traffic flow on the city’s east side was announced today by Gov. Sam Brownback. The work, which is being planned and funded by the Kansas Department of Transportation, the City of Wichita and the Kansas Turnpike Authority, will include new U.S. 54 interchanges at Webb Road and Greenwich Road and new KTA ramps at U.S. 54. “This is a great collaborative effort between the city, state and turnpike authority,” said Gov. Brownback. “Everyone will benefit from this project.”
Wichita City Councilman Pete Meitzner, who represents District II, which includes the project, said the improvements will improve commute times and traffic safety on the east side.
“This multi-agency partnership will serve motorists, residents and businesses in the Wichita area,” Meitzner said. “The project strategically addresses traffic flow and growth at two of the busiest east-side intersections.”
The work that will begin in 2015 is an expansion of a city/state interchange project at Webb Road for which bids came in significantly over budget earlier this year. That prompted discussions between the city, state and KTA about alternative design and cost-sharing approaches that would benefit travelers on all three systems.
“From those discussions, a cost-share study was undertaken with the aim of producing overall improvements along Kellogg/U.S. 54 and the turnpike ramps,” said Transportation Secretary Mike King, who also serves as KTA director.
“KDOT, KTA and the city have joined together to save time, expand the project scope and limit the construction impacts on traffic on all systems,” said Secretary King.
The total cost of these U.S. 54 corridor improvements is expected to exceed $300 million. The KTA will invest $24 million on the toll road interchange and ramps, only. The remaining amount will be shared by KDOT and the City. The improvements are projected to be completed in 2019.