Archive for Thursday, February 5, 2004

Coordination for Highway 7 planning to begin soon

February 5, 2004

Engineers and transportation officials will begin planning the future of the Kansas Highway 7 corridor possibly as soon as April, said Mick Halter, a Kansas Department of Transportation engineer.

Representatives from cities with interests in residential and commercial developments along the highway will be part of those discussions, Halter said.

"We'll start the process of meeting with the cities in April," Halter said Tuesday during a meeting at the department of transportation office in Bonner Springs. "This is something we truly want to work on with the cities."

The department of transportation has hired three consultant firms to coordinate a segmented study of the highway. The segments are divided into tri-county stretches in Leavenworth, Wyandotte and Johnson counties, transportation officials said.

The study, which is expected to take a year and a half to complete, Halter said, will be different from the highway study commissioned a few years ago. That study estimated the traffic volumes for sections of K-7 20 years down the road.

The new technical study is expected to be more in-depth, Halter said.

"We need to find out specifically what will make (K-7) function," he said. "We'll work with the cities and find out what the future direction this corridor should take, whatever that may be."

Nearby municipalities such as Lansing, Basehor, Bonner Springs and Shawnee have significant interests in developing property along the corridor, as does the Unified Government of Wyandotte County.

The dilemma faced by cities and transportation officials is how to accommodate a high-speed traffic without harming developments along K-7.

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