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Second-to-Last Phase for Off Broadway I-235/I-44 Begins

OKLAHOMA CITY, OK — The state’s largest interstate work zone recently began at the I-235 and I-44 interchange in Oklahoma City. The Oklahoma Department of Transportation is encouraging drivers to avoid the area during the nearly two-year project.
This project will bring a more than decade-long modernization effort almost to completion with a seventh and final phase scheduled for award in 2020. Together, these final projects will complete the widening of I-235/US-77/Broadway Ext. up to eight lanes between Edmond and downtown Oklahoma City.
“This is likely to be the most disruptive to traffic of any other project in the state,” said Terri Angier, ODOT Spokeswoman. “The project will eliminate the last remaining bottleneck for traffic by widening I-235 over I-44, and it will be the first four-level interchange built on the state highway system in Oklahoma.”
There are 11 bridges within this project, which includes building two new flyover ramps to move traffic more efficiently from northbound I-235 to westbound I-44 and from eastbound I-44 to northbound I-235/US-77/Broadway Ext. Separating these two movements from mainline I-235 will help eliminate existing conflict points and will allow for the removal of the two clover leaf ramps on the east side of the project. The tallest flyover ramp will be 70 feet in height, making the interchange similar to one at the John Kilpatrick Turnpike and SH-74 in north Oklahoma City.
This Off Broadway phase will be a nearly two-mile work zone on northbound and southbound I-235 between N. 50th St. and N. 63rd St. but the interstate will remain open to two lanes of traffic in each direction the majority of the time. With this widening project, motorists will have up to eight lanes between Edmond and downtown Oklahoma City to better handle the nearly 100,000 vehicles a day, on average, traveling the corridor. An equal number of vehicles travel I-44 in this area.
Allen Contracting Inc. of Oklahoma City was awarded the $105-million contract in December 2018, making this the largest single dollar amount contract in state highway history to date. The contractor will bring back nationally known bridge experts American Bridge Co. Inc. to erect the two flyover ramp bridges. American Bridge successfully completed the installation of the new BNSF railroad bridge over I-235 in early 2018 where the 2-million-pound apiece truss structures were rolled nearly a quarter of a mile into place.
The final and seventh act of the Off Broadway I-235 corridor widening is scheduled for award in 2020 to reconstruct westbound I-44 to northbound US-77/Broadway Ext. ramp at an estimated $16 million. That phase also will create a direct connection from N. Lincoln Blvd. to northbound US-77/Broadway Ext. Once all seven phases are complete, this will represent a nearly $300-million investment in highway infrastructure in the Oklahoma City area.

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