New MDOT road construction projects outlined for Warren

By Beth A. Birmingham | Oct 27, 2017
Source: File Photo

Warren — Three road construction projects were announced Oct. 25 at the Warren Board of Selectmen's meeting.

Resident Luther Yonce, who works for the Maine Department of Transportation, said MDOT is looking at projects to be done over the course of the next three years.

For Warren, that means adding an inch and a quarter overlay on 3.62 miles of Route 90 east of Route 1 in 2018, and almost two miles of Route 1 just east of Camden Road.

Yonce said there is also a large culvert on Route 235 just north of the Waldoboro line that needs to be replaced; however he noted that culvert funds have taken a hit in the last two months, so that project for 2019 might get put off until 2020 now.

"The soils on that bank are terrible, and it's going to be quite costly," Yonce said. "It's probably going to require that 235 get shut down for a week or so."

He noted that the Maine State Police have requested installation of an area to conduct spot-checks on Route 90 in Warren for weight limits of trucks traveling along that route.

"I can also see the State Police and sheriffs using that for radar ... which may not be a bad idea," he said.

Paving for both the Route 90 and Route 1 projects will be bid out together, instead of completing one project, then coming back the next year for the other, thanks to the insight of the new project manager for the area, according to Yonce.

"We reminded them we've been talking for 15 years about four-foot shoulders out there and it's our desire to make them eight feet," he continued.

He said there are a few areas where the shoulder will remain four feet because of right-of-way issues; however the money is in the budget and DOT would like to get it done, he said.

Another issue Yonce spoke about was speed. "Everybody is complaining about speed," he said.

Yonce directed Town Manager Bill Lawrence to Dave Allen, traffic engineer for the area, regarding conducting a speed study.

"I caution you, it's a double-edged sword," Yonce told the board.

He explained that most complaints are of speeding traffic on Route 131.

"We [residents] are as guilty as anyone else ... it's an enforcement issue," he said, adding that there is really no safe place for law enforcement to deal with speeders on that road, as there are no shoulders.

Yonce said the study would consist of an officer conducting radar checks for what is called the 85th percentile: "the speed at which 85 percent of the people are going is probably going to be the posted speed."

"If they're speeding today, you run the risk of us raising the speed limit," he said.

"Be careful what you ask for," Yonce concluded.

Courier Publications reporter Beth A. Birmingham can be reached at 594-4401 ext. 125 or via email at bbirmingham@villagesoup.com.

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