MoPac 'Improvement Project' road closures start Sunday night

MoPac 'Improvement Project' road closures start Sunday night

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By late 2015, the MoPac Improvement Project will be complete.

Steve Pustelnyk with the project tells us the 11-mile stretch of MoPac from Lady Bird Lake to Parmer Lane will get brand new express lanes.

"Basically, you'll get an extra lane in each direction.  It will be an express lane which means it should be non-stop, point to point, but there will be a toll for those folks who want to use it," Pustelnyk said.

Construction gets underway this fall, but starting Sunday night, crews will begin the design phase which means they'll be working through the night.

"Well to design the road they need to mark off survey points so they can figure out the elevations and locations of various elements of the project and so they are gonna be out there over the next month or two surveying the roadway.  That's gonna require some moving lane closures," Pustelnyk said.

Pustelnyk says that will be happening until late July only between the hours of 9 PM and 5 AM.

But starting the week of May 28th, they'll be doing some drilling to collect soil samples...something that may get noisy for people like Emily Yancey who live right by MoPac.

"We were pretty irritated because we already live by the train and so we're kind of used to that.  And we're used to our house like rumbling.  But with construction in the middle of the night, it's kind of inconsiderate.  I don't really know why it has to be that way," Yancey said.

"We're gonna be doing everything we can to minimize it.  We know it's gonna be painful.  We also know that a lot of the folks who live along side of the road are excited about the sound walls," Pustelnyk said.

They'll be putting in about 7 miles of sound walls mainly south of 2222 to drown out some of the highway noise when the project is complete.

"I think it's a great idea.  I know some people don't like the toll roads but if you look at how much time you waste on the freeway, driving to work everyday, if the toll road makes it quicker, it's definitely worth paying a couple of bucks," said neighbor Dustin Bolander.

"I mean, if it's gonna be better in the long run...   We're gonna live here a couple more years so it's nice that it'll fix the work traffic a little bit.  I guess that'll be worth it.  I think this summer, we're not gonna feel like it's worth it though," Yancey said.

The lane closures starting tonight and lasting until July will only be for about 15 minutes at a time as surveyors stop, mark the ground with paint and move on.

We're also told when construction starts there shouldn't be any planned road closures during the daytime but you can definitely expect some slow-downs.

If you would like more information about the MoPac Improvement Project, visit www.mopacexpress.com

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