Construction Continues in the I-40 Crosstown Corridor
Crews hang the second beam for the southbound I-235 off-ramp to the OKC Boulevard on Aug. 17.
Please remain alert to workers and equipment along I-40 and near the Oklahoma City Boulevard in downtown Oklahoma City. Lane closures are continually changing so drivers are asked to locate temporary alternate routes early. Daily lane closures are noted in ODOT's Traffic Advisories. Plan ahead for extra travel time, especially during peak traffic hours.
Twisted rebar and remnants of the old I-40 Crosstown bridge deck are shown
as part of removal of the former I-40 bridge near Western Avenue in 2012.
Work continues on ramps connecting I-235 and I-40 to the east end of the future OKC Boulevard. This is the view from the interstate in contrast with the photo above taken from below the same ramp.
Overview of Oklahoma City Boulevard and I-40 Connections
Serving as the final phase of the I-40 Crosstown relocation project, the Oklahoma City Boulevard will improve access to the downtown Oklahoma City Central Business District from the new I-40. The completed Oklahoma City Boulevard will serve as a low-speed city street running through the planned convention center and central park area, connecting on the east end to I-235 and I-40 near Bricktown and on the west end to I-40 near Pennsylvania Ave. and Western Ave. Plans for the new four-lane Boulevard include on-street parking as well as inclusion of features to make it pedestrian and bicycle friendly.
The anticipated overall cost of the Oklahoma City Boulevard is about $80 million, which includes about $50 million for connections to the new I-40 alignment at the east and west ends and another $30 million for the central part of the new Boulevard.
The overall construction of the Boulevard and connections to I-40, I-235 and I-35 includes:
- A now completed $9 million project that constructed the west end connection of the Boulevard to I-40.
- An ongoing $26.4 million project on the east end of the Boulevard anticipated to be complete in late 2015.It is contracted to Sherwood Construction Co. Inc. of Catoosa.
- A series of three major projects to complete the middle portion of the Oklahoma City Boulevard and its reconnection to the new I-40 alignment, I-235 and I-35.
- The first of these projects began in March 2015 and includes major railroad bridge work and construction of the Oklahoma City Boulevard intersection with Shields Blvd./EK Gaylord Blvd.
- The EK Gaylord Blvd. portion of this $40 million project is scheduled for completion in late fall 2015.
- The BNSF railroad bridge and the work on the Bricktown section are scheduled to finish by fall 2016.
- The final two Oklahoma City Boulevard projects, which run from Klein Ave. to E.K. Gaylord, are currently being finalized with both projects anticipated to be up for bids in 2016.
Oklahoma’s three major interstates converge near downtown Oklahoma City with I-35 and I-44 intersecting I-40 at either end of a 4-mile stretch known as the Crosstown. The original Crosstown was built about five blocks north of I-40’s new alignment through downtown Oklahoma City. To move the highway, the Oklahoma Department of Transportation embarked on one of its largest projects since the interstate system was completed in the 1970s.
Completed in 1966, the original three-lane I-40 Crosstown was designed to carry up to 76,000 vehicles daily. By 2005, when ground was broken for the new highway, it routinely carried as many as 125,000 vehicles each day.
The new $680 million I-40 Crosstown is designed to carry about 173,000 vehicles daily on five lanes in each direction. A planned multi-lane boulevard offering a connection to downtown Oklahoma City will further increase traffic capacity in the area.
Aesthetics in the project include the SkyDance pedestrian bridge near Robinson Ave. as well as design details on other bridges. Elements have been incorporated into retaining and screen walls that complement architectural aspects of the nearby Little Flower Church.