Both lanes of Icon Road closed for the construction of a turning lane into the Agricultural Learning Center starting March 29 and will remain closed through June.
Assistant Vice President of Facility Services Dan Haslag said in an email to The Missourian that traffic using Icon Road both north and south of U.S. Highway 71 will be diverted east. He said those traveling on U.S. Highway 71 will not be diverted, but may experience delays due to alternating one-way traffic.
“Construction of the turn lane requires the closure for the safety of the construction workers and motorists,” Haslag said.
Haslag said the overall turn lane budget is $800,000 and is a requirement of the Missouri Department of Transportation. Signage will be placed to warn travelers of the construction and any detours.
The closure is outside of city limits, which means the city has little to do with the construction. MegaKC was awarded the bid to construct the turn lane leading to the Agricultural Learning Center.
Update: March 21, 3 p.m.
Project Manager Brett Kreikemeier said the project will not only widen the highway to add a turn lane on U.S. Highway 71 to Icon Road, but 8-foot shoulders will be added to the highway from the Agricultural Learning Center to a little beyond Icon Road. Guard rails will be installed for traveler safety, and water drainage areas under the highway to displace water runoff from the roads.
Although two months of construction may seem long for people driving U.S. Highway 71 and Icon Road, Kreikemeier said it was a necessary time frame for the amount of work being done on the short stretch of highway.
“The two months is a pretty tight schedule for this work,” Kreikemeier said.
Kreikemeier said the new turning lane will prevent drivers from having to stop in the middle of the lane to turn left onto Icon Road and will create better access for the University to the Agricultural Learning Center.
“I think (the University’s) big concern is they want to get it done before school starts,” Kreikemeier said.
He also noted that all of these improvements were needed in that intersection of U.S. Highway 71 and Icon Road.