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Construction Grows As Project 180 Continues Downtown

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Project 180 is a project to renovate 180 acres of downtown and includes 8.5 miles of roadway. Project 180 is a project to renovate 180 acres of downtown and includes 8.5 miles of roadway.
Project 180 is expected to take three to four years to complete. Project 180 is expected to take three to four years to complete.

Dana Hertneky, News 9

OKLAHOMA CITY -- Another downtown street was closed Monday as part of Project 180.

Main street from Walker to Lee is now closed to through traffic. It's all part of the Project 180, dubbed that, of course, for the 180 acres of downtown that is being renovated.

But that project also includes 8.5 miles of roadways, and that is causing quite a headache for drivers.

"It's a pain in the keester," one driver said.

"Its crazy, I'm tired of it," another driver said.

"It's a mess," complained another driver.

Construction has clogged up and bogged down downtown for months, but the good news is -- the end is near, at least for the busiest areas.

"I think even come March or the end of February you're going to notice a drastic change in accessibility around the OKC arena, and the Cox Center and the Myriad Botanical Gardens," said Andrea French, a spokesperson for Project 180.

French said the area around the Myriad Gardens should be completed around April 1; the area surrounding the OKC Bombing memorial should be finished in time for the Memorial run by May 1; and the Walker Streetscape should be done by the end of Spring.

Still, that won't be the end of it. Project 180 is expected to take three to four years.

French said 2011 will bring more construction to the downtown area, but maybe in more convenient areas.

"It is a little bit challenging right now, but the outcome will be worth everyone's frustration," said French. "Downtown will look so much brighter and so much cleaner. So we're pretty excited."

And drivers seem to think that too.

Project 180 officials said they are trying their best to keep at least one lane open when possible.

Officials also said they are working with MAPS planners to try and not work on the streets where the streetcars might be going in, so they only have to do that once.

Get the latest closures downtown on the updated traffic advisory map.

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