ODOT Releases Options For I-35 Widening Project

Friday, February 21st 2020, 4:46 pm
By: Amber Gerard

ODOT wants to know how Oklahomans feel about the Interstate 35 expansion project. 

The project, which is a part of ODOT's eight-year plan, will expand Interstate 35 between Interstate 40 and Interstate 44. 

After evaluating the corridor, ODOT engineers have identified specific areas that require improvements and updating.

“When we start adding lanes we’re not only affecting the functionality and how it operates. It’s also about enhancing the safety along the corridor,” ODOT division engineer Trenton January said.

There are four proposals. They range from doing nothing at all to a major overhaul. 

“We have bridges that are not functioning. We have an aging infrastructure that we need to address,” January said. “Knowing that, we need to get ahead of it.”

The first proposal would keep things the way they are. The second and third are similar and seem to have to most support.

“There would be three lanes of interstate going in both directions and two one way frontage roads on either side of the interstate,” January said. 

The fourth proposal has been an issue of contention. It would potentially affect residential and commercials properties. 

“The fourth, we would go outside if our existing fingerprint and we would have two two-way frontage roads on both sides of the interstate,” January said. 

However, January said ODOT is sympathetic to the issue.

“This is just the beginning. Just ideas. We are aware of specific areas of concern. Historic homes and buildings. Parks. I’m time we will know what areas might be affected and what areas will not,” he said.

ODOT has not made a decision yet. However, when they do it, it would be at least eight to 10 years before construction would begin. 

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