FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Fort Wayne’s NBC) — It’s been said that Indiana has two seasons — winter and construction.
Construction is set to resume Monday on the major improvement project on Dupont Road.
It’s called one of the city’s largest improvement projects in a decade — with a $12 million investment.
Last summer, crews installed water and storm water pipes while utilities rerouted their lines for service.
A stretch of pavement had to be elevated in order to accommodate the new trail leading under the road.
Crews also installed a type of temporary asphalt so that two lanes of traffic would be open in each direction for the winter.
Beginning Monday, crews will begin to remove that to permanently pave the road, meaning there will be lane restrictions for months.
Businesses along Dupont like Kids Wear are dreading it, since spring and summer are typically the biggest revenue generating times of year.
“I’m hoping it don’t really affect much because before business sales went down. But this is the time that we’re the busiest, so hopefully it don’t really affect it much,” employee Amanda Stephens says.
“People don’t want to drive all the way around to get here, so they just avoid, they just don’t want to come. It’s just too much traffic or just how it was closed off. Or sometimes they didn’t even know if there was an open spot to get in over here,” employee Danielle Schafianski adds.
Denise Le drives a school bus, and says she tries to do her best when her route involves Dupont.
“As far as the bus goes, I travel down Dupont and I try to get in the lane that is the smoothest so it’s easier for the kids on their ride. But when I run errands personally, I usually avoid Dupont Road,” she says.
She insists she’s all for the improvements, but like anyone, she gets frustrated with the construction.
City leaders say it will be worth it.
“Now we have the trail that’s going to go underneath the road. We’re expanding, adding two lanes in each direction for travel, and then we’re also adding a sidewalk on the north side and a trail on the south side of the road,” says Frank Suarez from Fort Wayne Public Works.
Improvements still to come include landscaping, finished sidewalks and trails, and lighting.
The project is expected to be complete in July.