LAWTON, OK (KSWO) - A project, eight years in the making, to redo how drivers get on and off at I-44 and Rogers Lane is set to start next year. This week T&G Construction in Lawton was awarded the $6.68 million project, federally funded through the Federal Highway Administration.
In the coming year, there will be seven different ramps for Lawton drivers getting on and off at I-44 and Rogers Lane. Jay Earp, the Division Engineer for Oklahoma Department of Transportation said the 18,000 drivers who drive through the intersection every day to get on I-44 from Rogers Lane see a lot of congestion. They're hoping they can reduce it by taking away the red light on the east side of the Rogers Lane overpass.
"As you want to get on northbound to I-44 you'll have a cloverleaf ramp that you'll turn right onto and the enter the I-44 northbound expressway," Earp said.
But that's not the only cloverleaf being added because of the light removal.
"If you're wanting to get off I-44, and go west on Rogers Lane you'll have another cloverleaf - you'll go under the Rogers Lane bridge and drive on a cloverleaf and go west toward Lawton," he said.
Another change for drivers is the off-ramp to go eastbound on Rogers Lane will be removed.
"They're going to have their own new ramp," Earp said. "So, you'll go on southbound on I-44, you'll exit on a new ramp, north of the intersection, get on post road, and then you'll be able to turn left to go eastbound on Rogers Lane."
The ramp drivers take to go south on Rogers Lane off I-44 is the only ramp that won't be impacted but he said there will be a change for drivers who are headed east on Rogers Lane and want to go south on I-44 towards Lawton.
"We're building a new on-ramp," he said. "It will be a longer on-ramp. We're removing a ramp in that area so it will be less congestion and a little bit easier to get on I-44 southbound from eastbound Rogers Lane as well."
ODOT expects the project to start late winter or early spring of 2018. The contractor has 300 days to finish the project but incentives have been added in hopes of decreasing the time and inconveniences for drivers.