Kentucky Transportation Cabinet – District 3
The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet has spent the last several months in winter preparation and response mode. Up until this point in the season the winter weather has been mild, but crews remain ready to serve should winter weather create hazardous road conditions.
We are also looking ahead at a very busy spring in the Bowling Green/Warren County area. Some may have noticed “Road Improvement” signs installed at a couple different locations in the area. One location is on U.S. 68X (Kentucky Street/University Boulevard). A resurfacing project is expected to begin later this spring to resurface the roadway from the intersection with Avenue of Champions through downtown to KY 234.
A project to resurface and rehabilitate I-65 from the 13 mile marker to the 25 mile marker in Warren County is expected to begin later this year. Signs have been installed to let motorists know of the upcoming project. The rehabilitation will address the surface issues motorists are experiencing when driving on that stretch of roadway.
We also have some safety improvement projects coming to U.S. 231 (Scottsville Road) in the southern part of the county. A major improvement project to the U.S. 231 (Scottsville Road) area in the Bowling Green area near Cave Mill Road is expected to begin later this year as well. More information on those projects will be released when it becomes available.
The construction of the new interchange on I-165 at U.S. 231 (Morgantown Road) is continuing. Motorists should use caution while traveling in that area as there are lane closures and crews working in the area. The new “diamond” interchange is expected to open the traffic by the end of the year.
City of Bowling Green
Projects that are in the planning and/or design phase include Phase II of the Downtown Improvements projects. Phase I was completed late in 2019 and addressed deteriorating public infrastructure including streets, sidewalks, pedestrian and bicycle accessibility, and street lighting primarily around Fountain Square Park. The second phase will focus on 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). The City has funding in the current budget for the construction on Phase II. Additional lane modifications are planned for State Street from 6th Ave. to Riverview Drive that include the addition of a bike lane to compliment this project.
Additionally, design is underway for the final two phases of Shive Lane Improvements. These final two phases 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 and a traffic signal will be installed at Lovers Lane. A multi-use path is included along the length of both phases.
Additionally, the City is working with the developer of property near the intersection of Nell O’Bryan Court and Ken Bale Boulevard to install a traffic signal to help address increased traffic that will be generated as this area continues to build out.
The construction of the Southwest Parkway was substantially completed last fall. This project included two new roadways and a roundabout adjacent to the South Central Kentucky Industrial Park that completed the connection from Kobe Way, at the back of the industrial park, to Russellville Road. The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet funded all design, property acquisition, utility relocation, and construction for this project while the City provided construction oversight and project administration. The major goals of the project were to improve safety and promote economic development within the South Central Kentucky Industrial Park.
The City’s Annual Overlay contract was awarded in September 2020. This project includes approximately 14 miles of paving on City streets along with necessary rehabilitation or complete reconstruction of adjacent handicap ramps to meet ADA standards. The project is approximately 30% complete and on hold until asphalt plants open in the spring.
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. Design is wrapping up for portions of sidewalk along Loving Way, Holly Drive, Highland Way and North Lee Drive. Construction will likely follow early this year. The City is currently prioritizing new sidewalk projects for next fiscal year’s funding. Additionally, the City continues to allocate funds annually to rehabilitate existing sidewalk. The Sidewalk Maintenance Program identifies the process by which staff inspects and chooses 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.
The Public Works Department continues to work with the City’s Neighborhood & Community Services Department to provide better pedestrian connections throughout town. Sidewalk will soon be constructed along Johnson Drive and Dennis Way. A Transportation Alternative Program (TAP) grant was awarded to the City in conjunction with the (previously named) 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. Also funded through a TAP grant, funds have also allowed the City to extend its greenway system across Creekwood Avenue and across Jennings Creek. This extension has provided a connection to Moss Middle and Jennings Creek Elementary properties as well as the adjacent neighborhood. Finally, the City is continuing the final phase of the Smallhouse Road shared-use path from the existing path at Ridgecrest Way through the intersection at Broadway Avenue. This will provide further connections to parks and greenway facilities, as well as provide a safe space for bicyclists and pedestrians traveling on Smallhouse Road. Construction is expected to begin later in 2021.