An overnight concrete pour on the new overpass bridge near the intersection of Kanawha Turnpike and Jefferson Road is the latest step in a massive project to widen Jefferson Road to five lanes between US 60 in South Charleston and Corridor G.
“We are currently on schedule to complete the entire project in late 2024 or early 2025, as expected,” said Ryan Canfield, P.E., project manager with the West Virginia Division of Highways (WVDOH).
A short section of Kanawha Turnpike from Union Carbide Drive to just east of Jefferson Road will be closed from 8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 1, 2023, through 6 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 2, 2023, to pour the concrete deck on the new bridge. Work is being done at night to minimize the impact on traffic.
Canfield said there are no homes on the .2-mile stretch of road to be closed. Traffic can use MacCorkle Avenue to bypass the work zone, and Jefferson Road will remain accessible during the concrete pour. Emergency vehicles will be accommodated.
In April 2019, Gov. Jim Justice approved the bid award for the project to Kokosing Construction Company for $46.8 million to design and build the five-lane upgrade. In addition to widening Jefferson Road to five lanes, the project will replace a congested dogleg intersection and rail crossing at the intersection of Kanawha Turnpike and Jefferson Road with a new bridge and roundabout. Heavy growth along Corridor G has led to growing congestion on Jefferson Road, especially during the holiday season and on weekends.
The Jefferson Road widening project will work in conjunction with a new half-mile connector road to link Jefferson Road with RHL Boulevard. That project will add an additional access road to the Trace Fork Shopping Center, allowing direct access to Jefferson Road and alleviating congestion on both Jefferson Road and Corridor G.
In September 2021, Triton Construction Inc. was awarded a contract for more than $10.9 million to build the connector road, which includes the construction of a 420-foot bridge.
Kokosing has been concentrating on building a new bridge over the Kanawha Turnpike and railroad tracks on the far northern end of the project. Work continues widening Jefferson Road and on the bridge linking Jefferson Road with RHL Boulevard.
The first project in a series of three designed to alleviate congestion on Corridor G was completed in September 2021 when the WVDOH opened West Virginia's first Restricted Crossing U-Turn, or R-CUT, at the intersection of Oakwood Road and Corridor G. The R-CUT was designed to keep traffic flowing smoothly on Corridor G by shortening wait times at the traffic lights and redirecting traffic coming off Oakwood Road to two new U-turns: a faster and safer design.
“The Jefferson Road project, in conjunction with the RHL Boulevard project and the new R-CUT, will greatly alleviate congestion along Corridor G and improve travel times once complete,” said West Virginia Transportation Secretary Jimmy Wriston, P.E.
Gov. Jim Justice’s Roads to Prosperity highway construction and maintenance program allowed the WVDOh to free up federal funds and state money to pay for the Jefferson Road project.