As work continues on Highway 45, officials advised motorists to stay patient, including travel to Bristol School.

Officials still advise patience

By Jason Arndt

Since March, when the state Department of Transportation started reconstructing and resurfacing Highway 45 in the Village of Bristol, orange barrels and construction barriers have been an ongoing issue for motorists traveling through the area.

The hindrance, according to the state Department of Transportation, is more than half done.

DOT Communications Specialist Brian DeNeve, who reports the project is 60 percent finished, said Highway 45 projects to fully reopen by late October.

“Between now and then, great progress will be occurring in September on the portion from the State Line to Bristol School,” DeNeve said.

Meanwhile, at Bristol School, crews paved a driveway at the front entrance on Highway 45 and opened for drop off and pick up starting last week.

DeNeve, however, encouraged motorists to stay aware of their surroundings, and use alternate side roads to access the Bristol School entrance.

“The local residents should be advised the entire area is still under construction. Be patient and drive slowly,” DeNeve said. “Accessing the school via County AH is highly encouraged as it decreases the time motorists are traveling in a construction zone.”

Bristol District Administrator Michael Juech, who met with local and state officials in late August, conveyed other alternate access points on the school website.

Alternate entrances to the school parking lot include 203rd Avenue and the intersection of 202nd Avenue and 83rd Street.

“They wanted to make sure that we had that access point, we are still going to continue to encourage our parents to use our other access roads to pick up and drop off our students so that they could continue to do their work,” Juech said.

As crews continue to work, state and local officials have reported ongoing concerns related to motorists disobeying construction barriers, which caused some delays.

“Motorists using 45 as a through route is an ongoing issue,” DeNeve said. “Local law enforcement has been a great partner in our efforts to mitigate this.”

Bristol Village Administrator Randy Kerkman said most of the concerns involved non-local residents.

However, the DOT said residents have been cooperative with construction efforts.

“The DOT has stated our residents are very understanding,” Kerkman said. “The difficulty they expressed is with out of the area (motorists) trying to drive through the construction zone, thus delaying work as equipment and workers waiting for cars/trucks to drive through.”

Like DeNeve, Kerkman expressed gratitude to the Kenosha County deputies, who have diligently followed up on concerns.

For businesses, they experienced difficulties due to a variety of delays, including weather.

“The delays in the project probably caused the largest difficulty for the businesses,” Kerkman said. “The delays were mostly based on utility relocates, traffic that not supposed to drive through as well as a very wet spring and summer.”

A different look
When the project is complete, motorists expect to see a new vision as they travel through Bristol, Kerkman said.

“I think it will look vastly different with curb and gutter/sidewalks, and street trees, from 86th Street north to Highway 50,” he said. “Also having concrete in that area instead of asphalt will change the look and possibly the noise level.”

Once complete, it brings the relief of not having to endure the process for an extended period of time.

“Hopefully when the road is completed and open, the public will come back in greater capacity for the businesses,” he said. “The most welcome is the project will be complete and we should not have to go through this again for a very long time.”


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