Road construction on schedule despite rain

It’s been a wet past few weeks with lots of rain fall, which usually isn’t good for those working outside.

A few road construction projects in the area have battled the rain, but still look to be on schedule.

The weather has caused contractors working on Highway 33 near the Town of Shelby to get behind schedule just a bit.

Signs for road work to start on Highway 16 seem to say a different start date every week.

The Wisconsin Department of Transportation said not to worry though, they’re still right on schedule.

It’s been a familiar sight for a few months now. Going up the bluff on Highway 33 looks more orange then it does green–even with all the rain we’ve had.

“The rain hurts us. It saturates the sub-grade and makes soft spots that we have to fix or wait to dry out. Plus they can’t place the concrete during rain events,” Wisconsin Department of Transportation Project Manager Brian Meyer said.

But fear not, because things are drying out and work is still right on track.

“Pretty much worked their schedule around the weather, doing the stuff they could after the events and kind of tried to keep on schedule. We’re not opening up the entire new portion so that the contractor can come back down by 32nd Street and start a little earlier to make up some days that they did lose, but right now we’re on schedule,” Meyer said.

Meyer expects traffic to switch over to a new section of pavement from 32nd Street to about the Hillside Animal Hospital on Monday. The entire road is to be opened up Nov. 14.

Another project that has been delayed is Highway 16 in La Crosse.

“The contractors are busy this time of year so they’re getting to this one a little bit later than they had first hoped,” Wisconsin Department of Transportation Project Manager Todd Waldo said.

Construction will be between La Crosse and Gilette streets.

Crews will only be working at night to ease the slowdown of traffic during the day.

“This work will be from 7 p.m. to 6 a.m. So traffic will be switched over at night. And then at 6 in the morning, the road will be completely open to four lanes of traffic until the next evening,” Waldo said.

Even though the project was expected to begin earlier this month the finish date hasn’t changed, all lanes should be open in late September.

The Wisconsin DOT said traffic will be reduced to one lane on Highway 16. Waldo recommends adding a few minutes to your commute if you use Highway 16 around the 6 a.m. or 7 p.m. hours.

As always, they ask that drivers not use their cellphone, pay attention to traffic signals and to please slow down in construction zones.