More than three years in the making, the $152 million 4-mile reconstruction of US-69/75 from Chickasaw Road in Calera to US-70 in Durant has come to fruition. With the help of one of the largest federal grants in the department’s history and facing the challenges of COVID-19, improvements were made to highway accessibility, to protect key interchanges, create one-way frontage roads, and add a crossing over the railroad and four lanes of highway, all to alleviate traffic congestion and improve safety.
"These improvements to US-69/75 further expand this modern freight corridor to accommodate interstate-like conditions and allow for safe passage and to support continued growth and commerce in the area,” said Oklahoma Secretary of Transportation and ODOT Executive Director Tim Gatz. “We thank our local partners, the cities of Durant and Calera and the Choctaw Nation, and especially Senator Bullard and Representative Maynard along with those at the federal level, including Senators Inhofe and Mullin, who helped fund this project and supported its development from the beginning.”
The $62 million federal FASTLANE grant provided a funding solution allowing the project to be advanced in ODOT’s Eight Year Construction Work Plan. Being one of the highest accident locations in the Southeastern district at the time of the grant application, the additional funding allowed multiple issues to be addressed at a local level.
“This project allowed for increased efficiency with the elimination of traffic signals which minimizes conflict points and stop-and-go traffic,” said ODOT District Two Engineer Anthony Echelle. “Citizens benefit from six east to west connections reaching both sides of the community without having to interact with the high-speed highway.”
The project was awarded to Duit Construction in 2019 with major construction beginning in early 2020 and significant completion in September 2023. US-69/75 is a major freight corridor connecting Southeastern Oklahoma with nearby regional centers like Dallas, Texas, and St. Louis, Missouri, and with national border crossings.
- More than 1 million cubic yards of dirt moved (500 Olympic-sized swimming pools)
- Almost 100,000 tons of asphalt used
- 156,000 cubic yards of concrete used on roadway (15,700 truck loads)
- 2.5 million pounds of reinforcing steel used