by Aksinya Kichigina
The major road construction on K-10, I-35 and I-435 has brought substantial changes to drivers’ lives and the city in general. The massive road construction projects in the Kansas City area carry a purpose that affects the traffic conditions for all drivers.
Kimberly Qualls, Northeast campus Kansas Department of Transportation public affairs manager, helped clarify the overall provision over all the road construction projects in the Kansas City area.
According to Qualls, “The gate work project, which is covering K-10, I-35 and I-435, started last year of spring 2014.” She mentioned that “the improvements that already have been made and noticed are directed towards people driving through the constructions in order to prevent a risk of accidents and accumulated traffic.”
Each interchange project has a strong list of improvements that have, so far, have been accomplished on time. The project is estimated to take two years, Qualls claimed.
“The project is going to improve the congestion, weave movements, and it’s going to shorten travel times once it’s all completed. The project is not completed until December of 2016, and there have been several things that have already been opened on the project in the last couple of months,” Qualls said.
However, despite the current road construction projects on K-10, I-35 and I-435, KDOT’s projects are still expanding, with additional projects coming to I-70 and K-7.
Despite creating a challenging situation for drivers, the construction projects are progressing, and the outcome of the road enhancements have already been noticed.
“It is a little bit tough right now … but we have heard good feedback already. So right now we feel pain, but when it’s done, the drivers are going to be able to see overall the total improvements made throughout that interchange area,” Qualls said.
Some of the students and workers at the college also face the struggle over road construction almost every day on their way to school and work. That’s how Zaid Khalil, student, explained his personal experience of driving through I-435 on his way to school.
“I take I-435 to school and back home every day, and in the long run, I am sure that this construction are for the betterment of the road, but is it worth it?” said Khalil. “It seems like these workers take months to add a single lane to the highway by causing ridiculous traffic in the meantime … I don’t care how pretty the road is or how wide it is.”
The administrative assistant of student activities at JCCC, John Hanysz, sees the current situation over the road constructions in a positive way.
“I probably go through the construction on I-435 at least two or three times a week, and I think it is frustrating for the drivers… it is for me,” said Hanysz. “But I realize that they are improving roads, so I am happy to see that… I think, because of the expansion, the new construction and the way the road is going to be, there will be less traffic congestion, which should then cause less accidents,” Hanysz said.
For more information, visit http://www.ksdot.org.