City of Bowling Green
Phase II of the Downtown Improvements Project construction which began in July was completed in December. This project continued streetscape improvements on College and State Streets from Spring Alley to 6th Avenue, including portions of 8th Avenue and Main Avenue (east and west of the downtown square).
Design was completed for the second phase of Shive Lane Improvements. This project will continue the widening from the recently completed roundabout at Ken Bale Boulevard and the existing Shive Lane intersection and continue to Lovers Lane. With this construction, a roundabout will be included at the intersection with Middle Bridge Road. Additionally, a traffic signal will be installed at Lovers Lane and two signals will be removed, one at Middle Bridge Road and one at Fruit of the Loom Drive. A multi-use path is also included along the length of both phases. Construction is set to begin in February pending bid award.
The City’s Annual Overlay contract was awarded in July and continues. This contract includes 15.5 miles of city streets to be paved along with over 50 handicap ramp upgrades.
The Westen St. corridor was recently selected to receive traffic improvements through the construction of several single lane roundabouts. The intersections of Highland Way, Patrick Way, Rockingham Ave, and Ashley Circle were selected for this project. Converting these all-way stop controlled intersections to roundabouts will help alleviate the delay motorists routinely experience, especially during the PM peak hour. All four roundabouts will have the same dimensions and will be sized to easily convey passenger vehicles, schools buses, and fire trucks. Each roundabout will incorporate raised splitter islands to separate entering and exiting traffic as well as accommodations for current and future sidewalks. Preliminary design has started with final design scheduled to be completed in February. Construction of all four roundabouts is expected to be spread out over the next few years. The roundabout at Rockingham Ave. will take priority and construction should be completed late Summer 2022.
The existing intersections with Ashley Circle and Scottsville Rd. – Ashley Circle (north) at Wilkinson Trace and Ashley Circle (south) at Ashley St. – were originally constructed approximately 50 years ago. Since then, development along the Ashley Circle corridor has continued to increase. The result of this growth are long delays experienced by motorists at these two signalized intersections. To reduce these delays, the City proposes installation of dedicated right turn lanes at both locations to allow motorists to make right turns without waiting for vehicles going straight to clear each intersection. Preliminary design has started with final design scheduled to be completed in February. Improvements at the Ashely Circle (south) intersection are expected to occur in 2022 and construction for Ashley Circle (north) is currently scheduled for 2023.
The City is committed to providing a walkable community and therefore the City allocates funds to build new sidewalks in areas that show a need. Each year candidate projects are prioritized based upon a set scoring system to determine where funds will be spent. Sidewalk construction was recently completed along Loving Way, Holly Drive, Highland Way and North Lee Drive. The City has finished prioritizing new sidewalk projects for Fiscal Year 2022 and has selected candidate projects along portions of Euclid Ave., Morgantown Rd., Creekwood Ave., Rodes Dr., Riverwood Ave., and Rockingham Ave. Public meetings for these locations were held in October to gauge neighborhood support then presented to the Board of Commissioners in November for final approval. Survey and design will begin early this year with construction occurring in Fall 2022. Additionally, the City continues to allocate funds annually to rehabilitate existing sidewalk. The Sidewalk Maintenance Program identifies the process by which staff inspects and choses which areas will be inspected in a given year. Depending on funding, the City can correct safety hazards in hundreds of locations across the city per year.
Additionally, sidewalk rehabilitation along state-maintained roadways began in late 2021. This project was funded by the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet and implemented by the City in an effort to address safety hazards along existing sidewalks within state right-of-way. Once complete, the City will be responsible for the long-term maintenance of all sidewalks along state maintained roadways.
The City’s newly implemented Greenways Program mimics the Sidewalk program where candidate projects are ranked and selected annually based upon allocated funding. Design will begin early this year for the current fiscal year’s projects along portions of Smallhouse Road, Bryant Way and Lover’s Lane. Additionally, a project is currently underway to connect the greenway trail on the Weldon Peete Park side of River Street to the trail to the west. The new connection will be beneath the roadway bridge and thus eliminate the need for users to cross the heavily traveled roadway as they do today.
The Public Works Department continues to work with the City’s Neighborhood & Community Services Department to provide better pedestrian connections throughout town. Sidewalk construction is near completion along Johnson Drive and Dennis Way. Additionally, a Transportation Improvement Program (TAP) grant awarded to the City in conjunction with the (former) Greenways Commission that will provide pedestrian and bicycle connections between existing downtown greenways facilities, key destinations in the West End, and will ultimately improve problematic intersection crossings. Construction is set to begin as early as this winter.
Kentucky Transportation Cabinet – District 3
The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet District 3 crews have had a lot thrown at them in the last month. Our crews have made a huge difference in assisting local agencies during the recent tornadoes that devastated local communities in the District 3 area. Crews responded immediately following the tornadoes and the weeks following by helping with debris cleanup. Our crews had to shift focus from tornado aftermath recovery to snow and ice operations. So far, we’ve had two winter storms that have required response, but our crews didn’t miss a beat switching to snow and ice duty.
Much of the construction projects have either been completed or have stopped for the winter season. The Restricted Crossing U-Turn (RCUT) project on US 231 (Scottsville Road) in the Alvaton area has wrapped up for the winter and will resume in the spring. We expect to have some resurfacing projects on some major routes that are expected to start this year as well. Last season was one of the busiest construction seasons we’ve had and we expect to have a lot of great things happening in 2022 as well.