KY Department of Highways District One
Public Meeting Set for U.S. 68/KY 80 Aurora to Cadiz Corridor
U.S. 68/KY 80 Aurora to Cadiz Corridor Plan On
Track for December 5th Public Meeting
New Road Through LBL Designed to Fit Area’s Distinct Character
Paducah, KY-- The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet’s Department of Highways has scheduled an informal format public hearing on the reconstruction of U.S. 68/KY 80 from Aurora to Cadiz. The public hearing is set for December 5th, 2005 from 5:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. in meeting room A at Kenlake State Resort Park at Aurora.
According to District One Branch Manager for Pre-Construction Tim Choate, the project includes improvements from the Eggner’s Ferry Bridge at Aurora through the Land Between the Lakes (LBL) to the Cadiz Bypass.
“This hearing has been scheduled to afford anyone who is interested in the project corridor an opportunity to become better informed about the nature and scope of the project and to express their views on the new road,” Choate said.
The informal format will allow the public to come and go between the hours of 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM.
“A handout, containing project information, plans, exhibits and the approved environmental document for the project will be available. There will also be a number of video presentations that will provide a conceptual view of the new roadway. Representatives from the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet and our consultants will be available to answer questions,” Choate said.
Oral and written statements will be accepted during the hearing. A court reporter will be available for those who want to make an oral statement to be transcribed and entered in the official record.
“Modifications in the proposed alignment of U.S. 68/ KY 80 as they cross LBL and specific requests by the U.S. Forrest Service prompted the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet to make revisions in the project,” Choate said. “We’ve been responsive to their requests and we believe the high level of cooperation will result in a new road that is safe and efficient, as well as environmentally friendly. We’ve cooperated with the Forrest Service and the Federal Highway Administration by working together to come up with a context sensitive design that takes into account the unique character of the LBL and countryside along the route.”
Choate says the design specifically addresses the needs of the LBL through landscaped grass medians, bifurcated roadway where the opposing lanes are separated by a hundred yards or more of woodland area, use of alternative natural guardrail materials, use of aesthetic concrete treatment for bridges, and earthworks shaped to mimic natural landforms along the route.
“The route will include a separate hike and bike path from Aurora to Cadiz that runs parallel to the main roadway. Through the LBL it will take hikers and bikers out through the woodlands away from the roadway to help enhance their outdoor experience. East of Lake Barkley it will run adjacent to the roadway on into Cadiz,” Choate said.
The new U.S. 68/KY 80 corridor is expected to be built in about five sections, plus new bridges across Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley. Estimated costs of the bridges is $100 million each. The cost of just over 17 miles of roadway is estimated at $150 million. The new highway is an effort to improve safety, enhance transportation and promote economic development across southern Kentucky.
Written statements will be accepted, and information made available for a period of fifteen (15 days) after the public hearing at the Kentucky Department of Highways District One office in Reidland. All written and oral comments will become part of the official hearing record.
The U.S. Forrest Service, Federal Highway Administration, and the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet have approved the project’s Draft Finding of No Significant Impact and Section 4 (F) Evaluation.
Anyone who has reviewed the plans and wants to make a comment may address them to Timothy B. Choate, T.E.B.M. Pre-Construction, Kentucky Department of Highways, District One, P.O. Box 3010, Paducah, KY 42002.