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Underwood meeting in Bridgeport to discuss road projects

by Jennifer Biller

STAFF WRITER

Motorists in North Central West Virginia should expect traffic delays due to road construction for the remainder of the year.

The department of transportation is focusing on several highway projects which will improve road conditions and aide in developing the region's economy.

Governor Cecil H. Underwood and his administration will meet with local officials and citizens to discuss transportation issues at a regional cabinet meeting on Friday at 9 a.m. at Bridgeport High School.

"The days of just talking about critical highway improvement projects in West Virginia are over," Underwood said. "We are pushing ahead with this work as aggressively as we can."

Corridor H in Lewis County and I-79 in Harrison and Marion counties are two projects that Underwood cited as examples of upgrading transportation needs.

Locally, the department has been busy incorporating orphan roads into the state highway system. In Harrison County, 147 roads have been integrated.

"We are maximizing the use of available highway funding to carry out the most aggressive highway program in state history because these highway projects are important to entire counties and tens of thousands of our citizens," Underwood said.

Area highway projects planned for the remainder of 2000 include:

Braxton County -- Paving projects: 20 miles and $3.2 million. Eight bridges to be renovated or replaced at a cost of $3.9 million; $3.7 million for improvements for new construction and to widen pavement, construct turn lanes, install traffic signals and make slide repairs

Doddridge County -- Paving projects: 21 miles and $860,000. Three bridges to be renovated or replaced at a cost of $795,000; $104,000 for improvements for new construction and to widen pavement, construct turn lanes, install traffic signals and make slide repairs

Gilmer County -- Paving projects: 16 miles and $1.4 million. Five bridges to be renovated or replaced at a cost of $1.9 million; $179,000 for improvements for new construction and to widen pavement, construct turn lanes, install traffic signals, and make slide repairs.

Harrison County -- Paving projects: 27 miles and $1.2 million. Ten bridges to be renovated or replaced at a cost of $6.7 million; $20.4 million for improvements for new construction and to widen pavement, construct turn lanes, install traffic signals and make slide repairs

Lewis County -- Paving projects: 28 miles and $4.5 million. Four bridges to be renovated or replaced at a cost of $657,000; $735,000 for improvements for new construction and to widen pavement, construct turn lanes, install traffic signals and make slide repairs

Taylor County -- Paving projects: 13 miles and $571,000. Two bridges to be renovated or replaced at a cost of $3.1 million; $20,000 for improvements for new construction and to widen pavement, construct turn lanes, install traffic signals and make slide repairs.

Staff writer Jennifer Biller can be reached at 626-1443.

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