The Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) Northwest Region is conducting a Public Informational Meeting regarding the scheduled road construction projects in and around Rice Lake this summer. The meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, May 1, 2018 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Rice Lake City Hall, 30 E Eau Claire St, WI 54868.  The meeting will follow an open house format with a brief presentation beginning at 5:15 p.m.

The purpose of the meeting is to provide project information and expected traffic impacts during the 2018 construction season. In addition to the presentation, project overview maps and traffic impact maps will be on display. WisDOT and city of Rice Lake officials will be on hand to answer questions. This summer, there will be six construction projects managed by WisDOT and seven construction projects managed by the city of Rice Lake. Several of the WisDOT managed projects will have major, multi-month impacts on roadways in the city.

Starting in May, the first of these larger projects will begin. Activities include the reconstruction of South St. from Main St. to Kern Ave. In addition, Kern Avenue will be extended south to where Lemler Rd. presently meets Main St. South St. will be closed to through traffic, but local access will be maintained throughout the project. Construction around Tainter School will occur during summer break. This project will be finished by the fall of 2018.

In June, the WIS 48/Knapp St. resurface project, from Bear Paw Avenue to Tainter Street, will start. The purpose of this project is to rehabilitate the pavement surface of Knapp St., install traffic signals at both the intersections at Wisconsin Avenue and Hammond Avenue, and to reconfigure the striping of the roadway from the existing four-lane facility to a three-lane facility, commonly called a “road diet”. The three-lane facility will have one lane in each direction with a center two-way left turn lane for turning refuge. The highway will remain open to through traffic and local access with the exception of some short-term closures and one three-week closure of Hammond Ave. This project will be finished in the fall of 2018.

Also in June, three aged bridges on WIS 48 will be replaced west of Rice Lake, located between WIS 25 and 17th Street. During the construction of these three bridges, WIS 48 will be closed to through traffic and detoured. Local access to residents will be maintained. This project will be finished in the fall of 2018.

In July, the Main Street bridge reconstruction project will begin. Traffic impacts from this reconstruction project will not begin until early August. Main Street traffic will be reduced to one-lane in each direction for the duration of the project. Main Street will remain open to through traffic except for short-term closures and one seven-day closure for utility work. Access to residents and businesses will be maintained. This project will be completed in the fall of 2019.

Two other WisDOT construction projects have less impact to the traveling public, and are expected to last approximately a month each. In May, the roundabouts at the County Highway O and US 53 Interchange will be resurfaced. County O and the US 53 interchange ramps will be closed during night-time only, off-peak hours. A detour will be posted for this closure. In September, an existing culvert under US 53 will be rehabilitated. Motorists can expect short-term outside lane closures on southbound US 53 between the Hwy 48 interchange and the County O interchange.

Construction projects managed by the City include rebuilding several local streets, extending the Cedarside Trail to Allen St., and relocating the Northern Star Theatre. The construction activities will impact local streets and residents, but are not expected to have major impact to the main thoroughfares around Rice Lake.

All interested residents, property and business owners are encouraged to attend the meeting. The presentation will also be available after the meeting on WisDOT’s website.

Citizens who are hearing-impaired and require an interpreter may request one by contacting Diana Maas at least three working days prior to the meeting via the Wisconsin Telecommunications Relay system (dialing 711).

For more information regarding traffic impacts, transportation news and improvement project updates in Wisconsin’s northwest region:

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