Highway 33 deal too good for city to pass up

Port jumps at DOT offer to resurface extra half-mile for $33,000 even though road is not in bad shape

By KRISTYN HALBIG ZIEHM

Ozaukee Press staff

It seems like only yesterday the Department of Transportation expanded Highway 33 to four lanes, but the agency is already planning for a resurfacing of part of the roadway.

The Port Washington Board of Public Works agreed on Nov. 8 to enter into an agreement with the DOT to resurface the road from Martin Drive east to Summit Drive in 2027.

Originally, the DOT planned to mill the surface and overlay it from outside the city’s borders to Martin Drive, Public Works Director Rob Vanden Noven told the board.

But since the original project, which was completed in 2012, extended to Summit Drive, the city asked why the resurfacing didn’t run the entire length, he said.

The DOT agreed to resurface the road to Summit Drive, Vanden Noven said, but the city needs to pay $33,000 for the additional work.

“The road’s not in terrible shape, but if you can resurface a half-mile of four-lane road for $33,000, you should do it,” Vanden Noven told the board.

The cost, he noted, is the equivalent of 25% of the cost for the road between Martin and Summit drives.

Considering the original agreement the city signed when the highway was expanded calls for the city to pay 100% of the cost, Vanden Noven said, “I’m eager to jump on this. They’re offering us an excellent deal, I feel.”

Ald. Mike Gasper, a board member and engineer specializing in road projects, concurred.

“For an overlay, it’s a good time to do it,” Gasper said.

He asked if the DOT could be convinced to modify the roundabout so it would be the transition from four lanes to two, something that didn’t get much traction with the committee.

In addition to resurfacing the highway, the DOT plans to add handicapped ramps where sidewalks meet the road, Vanden Noven noted. Crosswalk improvements are also part of the plan.

Gasper noted that time has proven that the DOT over-designed the Highway 33 between Port and Saukville in 2011-2012.

“They did way overbuild the road,” he said. “We’re supposed to be up to 30,000 cars a day there by now.”

The width of the highway was a point of contention between the city and the state when the two-lane road was expanded to four lanes and roundabouts added.

 

 

 

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Ozaukee Press

Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

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Port Washington, WI 53074
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