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Portion of Highway S to close Tuesday
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Starts Tuesday

Portion of Highway S to close Tuesday

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SOMERS — A portion of Highway S will close beginning Tuesday for approximately 10 days for railroad crossing work.

The portion to close stretches from Highway 31 (Green Bay Road) to Highway H (88th Avenue). Motorists are urged to use a posted detour around the work area via Interstate 94, Highway 158 (52nd Street) and Highway 31. This is the same detour route that is in place for a long-term closure that continues on Highway S between 38th Street and the I-94 East Frontage Road.

Residents and businesses will retain access to their properties — from the west for properties located west of Highway EA, and from the east for those east of the railroad tracks.

Crews will be replacing the Union Pacific crossing just east of Highway EA (72nd Avenue), expanding it to align with the newly widened Highway S.

The Highway S project, which began in the spring, involves expanding the road into a four-lane, divided highway between Highway 31 and the East Frontage Road (120th Avenue). Other enhancements include additional turn lanes, new traffic signals, improvements to drainage and the addition of an off-road, multiuse path for bicyclists and pedestrians.

“If you go out to the project site, you can now see much of the path that the new road will follow,” Kenosha County Highway Director Clement Abongwa, said. “This year’s work has focused on constructing the new westbound lanes, which are located generally just north of the old right-of-way.”

Late this summer, a new, expanded bridge was constructed over the Canadian Pacific Railroad. The construction of the bridge over the Kilbourne Road Ditch is ongoing and scheduled to be completed the week of Oct. 26, Abongwa said.

Work will continue through late 2021, with a break during the winter months.

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“A long-term closure, from the Highway N intersection to the East Frontage Road, will continue through late fall,” Abongwa said. “For the winter months, both directions of traffic will be shifted over to the new westbound lanes, so that construction of the eastbound lanes can begin in the spring.”

Project on schedule

The project is currently on schedule despite a few days of rain during the last month, he said.

“Next year, the new eastbound lanes will be constructed largely over what had been the old, two-lane road,” Abongwa said.

The $30 million expansion of the highway was needed to accommodate additional traffic in the area.

“A four-lane, divided Highway S will meet the present and future highway capacity needs of that area,” Abongwa said. “Between Amazon, First Park 94 and all of the other business development along the interstate, the need was clearly there to widen this artery in and out of Kenosha and Somers and relieve traffic congestion. This project will accomplish that.”

As part of the construction, homes and businesses along the area were purchased and razed, including Icky Ricky’s tavern at the intersection of highways S and H.

A total of 26 homes or businesses were relocated for the project and there were partial purchases of 96 properties.

More information about the project is available online at kenoshacounty.org/2051/Highway-S-Expansion-Project.

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