After 15 years of talk, action on the connector road between Ky. 34 and Ky. 33 north of Danville has finally commenced.
Heavy equipment from The Allen Co., which was awarded the contract on the project on a $6.3-million bid, began cutting the new section of Ky. 2168 last week, starting just north of Goggan Lane and working west to hook up with the existing section of the bypass that joins U.S. 127 and Ky. 33 near Danville Christian Academy.
Natasha Lacy, spokeswoman for the state Transportation Cabinet, said Friday that the new road should be open to traffic in a year, in August 2013.
Local officials have been looking forward to the so-called north Danville bypass since it was first discussed in the legislature in 1996. By connecting Ky. 34 to U.S. 127, the new route will create a cleaner route to Lexington for industries located on Danville’s west side as well as residents in western Boyle County.
It will also keep big trucks from having to maneuver through downtown, which often clogs traffic and creates safety concerns. Danville City Commission is expected to consider an ordinance that will require semis to use the new bypass except when making deliveries downtown.
The nearly two-mile section of new road will traverse what is now mostly open and level pasture land. James Bowman of the Allen Co. said Friday that the route was “smooth sailing.” There is a layer of shale rock that will have to be blasted out and a creek to cross, Bowman said.
Lacy said that a bridge 267 feet long and 25 feet high will be built across Spears Creek. Some utilities also will have to be moved to make way for the road, she said.
Because the entire section runs cross country, the project can be completed with only minimal disruption to traffic traveling the existing roads, Lacy said.
Like the current portion of Ky. 2168, the new road will be two lanes but includes rights of way on both sides so it can be widened to four lanes in the future.