Interstate project progressing as construction season comes to close

Portions of Highway 14 in Janesville will be closed for a second consecutive night on Thursday, as crews work to raise beams for an interstate bridge that will run overhead.

For some, the work comes as a sign the project is on track.

“A lot of work has been done throughout the 45 miles and a lot packed into one year,” said Steven Theisen, project communications manager for the I-39/90 project.

Elsewhere in Janesville, crews are putting the finishing touches on a bridge that will support northbound traffic passing over Highway 26.

For Theisen, seeing major projects come closer to completion prior to the end of this year’s construction season provides a hopeful feeling.

“It’s been a very productive season,” he said. “A lot of work going on.”

For those who commute each day, the construction can sometimes be a burden. However, bus companies like the Van Galder Bus Co. in Janesville say for the most part, things have been running smoothly.

“The communication has been great,” said Allen Fugate, who manages the company’s Janesville location.

Fugate said prior to the work starting, he was skeptical it wouldn’t have negative impacts. However he said through communication from one driver to another, buses have been able to avoid lengthy backups or crashes.

“If there’s an incident popping up on the other side of the road, there’s a driver that’s seeing that, and giving us the notice that’s something’s going on,” he said.

In November, work along the interstate will pause for the winter months. Theisen said even though the project is not yet done, local communities are already seeing its impact.

“Janesville is seeing growth and development, Beloit is seeing growth and development, having that infrastructure in place really paves the way for a lot more people to visit,” he said.

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