Completion of six lanes on I-81 north of Martinsburg to be July 2013

August 18, 2012|By MATTHEW UMSTEAD |
  • Construction on I-81 south in Berkeley County slows traffic approaching exit 23 between Marlowe and Falling Waters.
By Colleen McGrath/Staff Photographer

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. — The widening of Interstate 81 from four to six lanes north of Martinsburg toward the Falling Waters/Marlowe exit is scheduled to be completed in July 2013, according to the West Virginia Division of Highways.

With a bid of $35,643,000, Kokosing Construction Co. of Columbus, Ohio, was the low bidder among five contractors who submitted proposals for the project, according to the DOH.

Daniel S. Watts, DOH area engineer, said Friday that several other subcontractors are working on the approximately five-mile widening project, which was about 22 percent complete at the end of July.

Contractors are finalizing outside shoulder reconstruction, which will allow for traffic to be shifted to the outer portion of the highway’s northbound and southbound lanes, Watts said.

Once traffic is moved outside, work will commence on the inside third lanes, inside shoulders, median wall and two bridge structures, Watts said.

The widening work will tie into a new six-lane I-81 bridge over U.S. 11 at Exit 23, which is about 78 percent complete, Watts said.

Work under way on the $16.3 million bridge project, which was awarded in 2010, includes construction of the bridge deck. Construction of parapet walls and a median barrier will follow the deck work, Watts said. St. Albans, W.Va.-based Orders Construction Co., was awarded the contract, he said.

Watts said the state has scheduled dates for the Van Metre Ford bridge and North Tennessee Avenue bridge projects for Dec. 28, 2012, and Jan. 28, 2013, respectively. 

The Van Metre Ford bridge over Opequon Creek is the state’s second oldest span, state transportation officials have said. The one-lane, stone-arch bridge was built in 1832.

The design for the new three-lane bridge for Golf Course Road over the creek includes a sidewalk, officials have said.

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