The crumbling history of the Crosstown Expressway

Monday, April 14th 2008, 6:10 pm
By: News 9

It's a well-known fact that Oklahoma has some of the worst roads and bridges in the nation, and many people joke that the orange construction barrel should be our state symbol! By 2012 - the year the new Crosstown Expressway is expected to open - most of those familiar construction barrels should be absent from the I-40 Crosstown.

Built in 1965, the current Crosstown Expressway is showing its age. In 1989 it was shut down for emergency repairs when a crack was discovered in a pier beam. More recently, holes have begun opening up on the bridge. On March 11, 2008, a hole opened in the center lane of westbound I-40. A few weeks later, on March 28, 2008, the crumbling bridge was closed again for more emergency repairs.

The Interstate 40 Crosstown Expressway was rated as one of the most unsafe bridges in the nation. Instead of continuing to repair a dilapidated bridge, the Oklahoma Department of Transportation is building a new one. The new Crosstown is being built just south of the existing highway; however, the question most Oklahomans ask is if the current bridge will hold up until the new one is completed.