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County road projects bring short delays

Union County will begin road projects this month and residents can expect some delays, said Union County Engineer Zach Gunsolley.

With the exception of a few projects, however, those delays will be minor and temporary. Drivers who run into a delay on their way to work will not face the same delay on their way home, Gunsolley said.

“Creamery Road resurfacing, for example, is going to have a pilot car set up. So people will have some delay, but still be able to get through,” Gunsolley said.

REA Road west of Jaguar, REA Road west of Lorimor and 170th Street and Dogwood will be completely closed for several weeks while they are completely reconstructed.

“It’s [REA Road] much rougher than the rest of the sections,” Gunsolley said. “The middle sections of REA are improved. They’re better graded. They have more sight distance. There’s been a grading project there where they’ve cut out the hills and filled in the valleys so it’s a gentler ride, where the other ends are more like a rock road. If you drive down a rock road, it’s a lot hillier. You don’t see as far over the hill once you come to a hilltop because the hills are sharper. Those hills are not improved and they’ve been patched and patched and patched, and they’re rough because of that.”

Drivers will experience delays on roads where the county is going to be resurfacing. The road will be closed during the resurfacing process, but not to the extent of the closure on REA Road and 170th Street.

“The detail is on those other roads where there is resurfacing,” Gunsolley said, “it’s going to get a new top coat surface on the existing road that’s there. We’re not tearing up the road. While the contractor is there, there’s going to be about a half a day or a day that they’re going to be on each mile and then they’re going to be on the next mile. It’s going to be a moving closure. The whole 41 or 42 miles, they’re not all going to be closed at the same time. This contractor is going to rotate around and work on one mile at a time.”

For more specific details on these temporary closures, Gunsolley recommends checking on iowacountyroads.org where he plans to include more detailed day-to-day closure information.

These road projects are made possible by the availability of bond revenues. About $2.2 million of the the $5.1 million going toward these projects is bond money which has been combined with farm-to-market money funds giving the county the ability to tackle a large volume of projects all at once, which in turn brought the cost of the projects down.

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