I-29 reconstruction far from finished - KTIV News 4 Sioux City IA: News, Weather and Sports

I-29 reconstruction far from finished


SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KTIV) -- Recent accidents on Interstate 29 in the Riverside area may have many of you wondering, how far along is the reconstruction project and what's left to do?

While construction's been going on for two years now, project officials say, get used to a lot of orange for the foreseeable future.

"It will be road construction for years to come," says Dakin Schultz of the Iowa DOT.

Widening Interstate 29 from four lanes to six, from Singing Hills Boulevard, to the South Dakota border is a big job.

"This part of the interstate was some of the earliest interstate built in the state of Iowa," Schultz said.

At 50 years old in some spots, I-29 wasn't designed to take on the type and amount of traffic it handles today. Right now, the project's focus is centered around the Riverside Boulevard exit.

Schultz says, "There will be changes in the traffic patters up in Riverside yet this year."

Some time after Labor Day, crews will begin work on the median, meaning north- and southbound traffic will be shifted to the outer lanes, giving workers a little more room. The on-ramp from Riverside will also be shut down for a time.

A few miles south near the Floyd Monument, is another section where you can expect to see work starting up in the next couple of weeks. One of the southbound lanes will shut down, as construction starts on a retaining wall to handle the extra lane.

"When we're done with this, you're going to have a safe, modern system that is going to last us for generations to come," Schultz said.

Safety, capacity, and modernization. Schultz says those are the main objectives of the widening project, which will take a lot of patience from regular drivers to get it done safely.

The project's expected to take a decade go finish. At two years in, 2018 is likely the earliest everything would be completed. The DOT hopes to start in on the downtown portion by 2013 or 2014.

Online Reporter: Zach Tecklenburg

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