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Kansas Governor and FHWA Administrator Break Ground on 69Express

OVERLAND PARK, KS — Governor Laura Kelly was recently joined by Federal Highway Administrator Shailen Bhatt, Representative Sharice Davids of the Kansas 3rd District, and other state and local representatives to break ground on 69Express, the state’s first express toll lane project.

Traffic on U.S. 69 is expected to increase 450 percent by 2050. The Kansas Department of Transportation's 69Express project will proactively reduce congestion by widening U.S. 69 from just south of 151st Street to just north of 103rd Street in Overland Park. Interchanges that connect U.S. 69 to the local street network will be modified. The project also includes the completion of a new interchange at 167th Street.

“69Express will ensure that commuters can travel quickly and safely to their destinations and move freight efficiently throughout the state, further cementing Kansas as critical to interstate commerce,” Kelly said. “This is a smart investment for our state, and I’m so glad we’re finally moving dirt and getting this done.”

This project is funded in part through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL) passed in 2022.

“We’re proud to support the Kansas Department of Transportation and its partners in investing to make one of the state’s busiest travel corridors safer for all users — whether they are moving freight or trying to get to work on time,” Bhatt said. “This project will improve safe travel and accommodate the growth needs of strong local economies throughout the entire Kansas City region.”

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Pre-construction work is underway, with construction slated to begin in the spring of 2023. The express lanes are scheduled to open by the end of 2025.

The 69Express project will add two new lanes to U.S. 69 — one northbound and one southbound. The new lanes will be tolled using dynamic pricing, which manages congestion by maintaining a free flow of traffic in the express lanes and reducing traffic in the two non-tolled lanes.

“KDOT and the Kansas Turnpike Authority are excited to get this first-of-its-kind project for Kansas underway,” Acting Secretary of Transportation Calvin Reed said. “69Express will help manage congestion and keep traffic moving in all directions well into the future.”

The event was held at the Blue Valley Hilltop Conference Center on 143rd Street and just east of U.S. 69. Acting Transportation Secretary Reed; Overland Park Mayor Curt Skoog; former Transportation Secretary Julie Lorenz; Design-Build Team Representative Tim Paulson, Emery Sapp & Sons Construction; and Overland Park Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Tracey Osborne Oltjen also spoke.

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