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Evers restarting plans to expand I-94 around Milwaukee

Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers says he plans to seek federal approval to restart a long-stalled project to expand a 3.5-mile stretch of Interstate 94 around Milwaukee.
Interstate 94
Interstate 94(FOX6 MILWAUKEE)
Published: Jul. 8, 2020 at 3:19 PM CDT
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MADISON, Wis. (AP/WMTV) - Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers says he plans to seek federal approval to restart a long-stalled project to expand a 3.5-mile stretch of Interstate 94 around Milwaukee.

Then-Gov. Scott Walker abandoned the project in 2017, when it came with a price tag close to $1 billion. The plans were to expand the east-west corridor from four to eight lanes to ease congestion in one of the most dangerous stretches in the state. It runs from the Marquette interchange at 16th Street to the Zoo interchange at 70th Street. 

“Investing in our infrastructure is critically important for our economy,” Gov. Evers said in the release. “Moving forward on the I-94 East-West corridor project will mean between 6,000 and 10,000 good jobs and will ultimately save lives, reduce travel times, and help businesses across our state. We know that deferring road maintenance could cost us more down the road and put safety at risk, so getting to work on this project is good common sense.”

The I-94 East-West corridor was built more than 60 years ago and acts as a lifeline for many businesses and local economies across the state, according the press release. Its original design was intended for significantly less traffic than its use today.

“Almost half of Wisconsin’s exports exit the state through the southeast,” said WisDOT Secretary-designee Thompson. “Making it easier and faster for freight trucks and delivery vehicles to get through the East-West corridor will make businesses all over Wisconsin more competitive.”

WisDOT plans to reassess alternatives to confirm the preferred project plan to both increase safety and travel times and preserve local historic grave sites. The project plan will not include the “double-decker” design that drew opposition from community members in 2015.

Copyright 2020 WMTV. All rights reserved.

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