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DOT begins study on widening I-43

Two lanes could be added between Brown Deer and County Line roads

April 24, 2012

River Hills - The Wisconsin Department of Transportation will begin an early environmental study of Interstate 43 from the Silver Spring Drive exchange to Highway 60 in Grafton. Survey crews are already working on the roadway, according to Steve Hoff, the project manager for the study.

At the invitation of the Village Board, Hoff outlined the parameters of the study and the reasons for it last week.

Traffic is heavy along the 14-mile stretch, particularly from Silver Spring Drive to the County Line Road exit. From 2002 to 2006, there were between 130-135 crashes on that stretch, with another 70-75 on the stretch north of County Line to Highway 60.

Hoff said the study will look at expanding the roadway from four to six lanes from County Line Road to Silver Spring Drive, improvements to the interchanges at Good Hope, Brown Deer, County Line and Mequon and Pioneer roads as well as a possible new interchange at Highland Road.

"The Highland Road interchange was recommended by SEWRPC," Hoff said. "There is a local cost share in order to do it."

The study will look at ways to improve safety throughout the stretch.

Larry Boyer, who was attending the board meeting, asked if sound barriers would be considered in areas where the road is widened, likely to be a concern for both River Hills, Fox Point, Bayside and Glendale residents living close to the interstate.

Hoff said that, too, would be reviewed and considered.

The DOT will hold a series of community workshops in September and develop conceptual alternatives by December, Hoff said. In April 2014, the timeline calls for a public hearing and selection of a preferred alternative. The plan would then go to the legislature for approval and funding.

Assuming the study and planning moves as projected, construction would commence in eight to 10 years.

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