MAINE DOT HOSTS ROUTE 302 MEETING

by Gair on September 24, 2013

OFFICIALS FROM THE MAINE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION WILL HOLD A FINAL PUBLIC MEETING WEDNESDAY NIGHT IN FRYEBURG, MAINE TO DISCUSS A MAJOR HIGHWAY RECONSTRUCTION PROJECT PLANNED FOR U.S. ROUTE 302.

D.O.T. PROJECT MANAGER BOB CARRELL SAYS THE PROJECT IS STILL IN THE PRELIMINARY PLANNING STAGES – BUT IT CALLS FOR ALL NEW PAVEMENT – AND PAVED 6 FOOT SHOULDERS – TO BE LAID DOWN ON A JUST MORE THAN 5-MILE STRETCH OF THE BUSY ROAD STARTING JUST WEST OF STANLEY HILL RD. IN FRYEBURG TO A POINT JUST EAST OF STACK EM IN RD. IN BRIDGTON NEAR THE MOOSE POND CAUSEWAY.

CARRELL SAYS WEDNESDAY’S MEETING – IT FOLLOWS AN INITIAL MEETING HELD LATE LAST YEAR – IS INTENDED TO ALLOW MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC TO ASK QUESTIONS AND MAKE COMMENTS BEFORE THE PROJECT PLAN IS FINALIZED.

CARRELL SAYS THE CURRENT ROAD – ORIGINALLY BUILT IN THE 1930s – IS IN POOR CONDITION AND DOESN’T MEET HIGHWAY DESIGN AND SAFETY STANDARDS. AS AN EXAMPLE, HE SAYS THE EXISTING ROAD SURFACE AND UNDERGROUND DRAINAGE ARE POOR, CONTRIBUTING TO A WEAKENED PAVEMENT STRUCTURE THAT REDUCES THE ROADWAY’S LIFESPAN.

THE EXISTING GRAVEL SHOULDERS ALSO VARY IN WIDTH. CARRELL SAYS THERE ARE A NUMBER OF BENEFITS TO HAVING PAVED SHOULDERS, INCLUDING PROVIDING GREATER SAFETY FOR BICYCLISTS AND DRIVERS – AND BETTER DRAINAGE.

CURRENT PLANS DO NOT CALL FOR THE INSTALLATION OF CENTERLINE RUMBLE STRIPS. CARRELL SAYS THAT’S BECAUSE STATISTICS – THAT INDICATE ABOUT 5,000 VEHICLES TRAVEL THAT STRETCH OF ROAD EVERY DAY – DON’T SHOW THERE IS A PROBLEM WITH DRIVERS CROSSING THE CENTERLINE.

THE PROJECT IS ESTIMATED TO COST ABOUT $6 MILLION AND IT COULD START IN THE SPRING OF 2015 AND BE COMPLETED THE FOLLOWING SUMMER.

WEDNESDAY’S MEETING STARTS AT 6 P.M. AT FRYEBURG ACADEMY’S LEURA HILL EASTMAN PERFORMING ARTS CENTER ON BRADLEY ST. IN FRYEBURG.

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