Until now, temporary signs have denoted I-69, which covers 38 miles of the former WK and 16 miles of I-24. Permanent signage is part of a $9.9 million project to bring the section of former parkway up to federal standards for interstate highways. Other improvements include upgrading ramp tapers and raising bridges to meet clearance requirements.
"The sign work should go almost unnoticed, creating only a few lane restrictions here and there as crews go about their work," says Kevin McClearn, chief district engineer for Department of Highways District 2, in Madisonville. "Some of the additional work also can be completed with only minor traffic restrictions."
McClearn said some of the more significant upgrades will be announced as work rolls out over the summer construction season. They include:
-Mile point 0: Extend merge lanes and complete slide repair at I-24/WKP/I-69 Interchange
-Mile point 3.7: Extend merge lanes at U.S. 62/WK /I-69 Interchange
-Mile point 11.7: KY 91/WK/I-69 - Extend merge lanes, increase overpass clearance, widen railroad overpass lanes
-Mile point 13.12: KY 293/WK/I-69 Interchange - Increase overpass clearance
-Mile point 20.88: KY 2619 over WK/I-69 - Remove and replace bridge superstructure
-Mile point 21.75: WK/I-69 Tradewater River Bridge - Deck overlay and barrier retrofit
-Mile point 22.00: WK/I-69 Tradewater River Overflow Bridge - barrier retrofit
-Mile point 31.58: KY 454 Overpass - Increase bridge clearance over WK/I-69
-Mile point 34.0: Pennyrile Parkway Interchange - Add I-69 signage to Interstate standards
-I-24 Exit 25/Purchase Parkway interchange - Add I-69 signage to Interstate standards
At some locations overpasses will be raised, and at others, pavement grinding will be used to increase clearance.
Westate Construction of Hopkinsville, Ky., is the prime contractor. Guardrail along the affected section was previously upgraded to interstate standards, and curbs on a number of bridges were upgraded during routine deck repair work.