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Summer Road Construction Report: Start of a busy season

Published: May. 24, 2022 at 3:41 PM AKDT
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FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) - The Alaska Department of Transportation (DOT) has a busy summer ahead with 61 projects lined up for the season. These projects are spread out in 17 communities ranging from the Dalton Highway to Valdez.

The short summer Alaska provides is the work window that allows these construction projects to be completed just in time for winter.

A good portion of the road construction planned this season is in Fairbanks. Danielle Tessen, Public Information Officer with DOT said, “A couple of those big projects we’ve got are work downtown on the Cushman Street Bridge. That’s happening right now. We’ve also got the Mitchell Expressway that we are doing bridge repair work from when it was struck. We’re finishing up some work on University Avenue, which has been a big project since 2018. Then coming up in June we’re going to have a pretty big closure of the Steese Highway ranging from College Road all the way to the intersection of Ft. Wainwright.”

These major projects are all unique as the road systems in Fairbanks experience harsh weather elements such as permafrost and ice.

According to DOT, damages to the road systems can be costly. Tesson went on to say, “It is about $241 million dollars that we are spending and we have from that 90 percent of that is from federal funds and 10 percent of that is a state match.”

For Fairbanks residents to stay in the know about road construction in the Interior and throughout the state, DOT has provided a few tools to stay updated throughout the summer, including an interactive website with GIS mapping.

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