Apr 02, 2024

Barton Commission gives go-ahead on project for high-risk rural roads

Posted Apr 02, 2024 3:54 PM

Great Bend Post

Barton County's Road and Bridge Department is responsible for 796 lane miles in the county. At Tuesday's county commission meeting, Engineer Barry McManaman asked for the board's approval to move forward with the Kansas Department of Transportation's (KDOT) High-Risk Rural Roads Project, which involves a no-passing zone analysis and signing improvements on roads in the southwest portion of the county.

"As we've discussed previously in study session, we did apply for a project to have a consulting firm analyze the need for no-passing zones on the routes," McManaman said. "Once those no-passing zones are determined, there would be a signing project included in this project. The signing project would consist of putting up the no-passing pennants we see on the side of the road."

KDOT will pay for 100 percent of the design, construction, and inspection costs of the project. Barton County would pay for any additional right-of-way or utility adjustments, though McManaman does not expect any with only signage being added. The southwest corner of the county was selected because road and bridge will be doing its overlay and chip-seal work in that quadrant in 2025, and the roads will need striped following that work. McManaman has already applied for a similar grant for the southeast part of the county for future years.

"We have a few routes around the county that don't have an official engineering analysis for the no-passing zones," he said. "I would like to see the county, eventually, get it to where all our no-passing zones are official and have been studied properly."

With three commissioners present, the board voted 3-0 to approve the agreement between the KDOT, the Kansas Secretary of Transportation, and Barton County.