City of Topeka holds open house for Gage construction project

TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNT) — The city of Topeka is planning to redo Gage Boulevard next year. This will include patching and re-covering the street with asphalt. They are also planning to replace some sidewalks, sidewalk ramps and gutters.

“Right now we’re still looking at the construction sequencing details and trying to figure out the best way to construct the project,” said Robert Bidwell, pavement improvements manager for the city of Topeka.

An open house was held Monday night at the First Christian Church on Gage. While most people who attended agree Gage needs work, some people do have concerns.

“I think the plan is a band-aid,” Galen Hawk said. “It should be a five-lane street or it should be changed to a three-lane street.”

Hawk has lived in Topeka for nearly 40 years. He said that if the city is looking at spending this much time and energy on Gage they should consider building a turning lane for the VA hospital.

“I see many many wrecks,” he said. “I own property in front of the VA property and people are traveling too fast along there.”

Others had fears about the scope of the project and what it will do to traffic in the area.

“There’s some streets in the neighborhood just to the west that have very through streets,” said Jeff Coen, Topeka City Councilma. “They go three or four blocks. We’re afraid that they’re going to be cut through streets for traffic that’s trying to avoid the construction.”

City leaders took notes of people’s concerns throughout the meeting. Another public meeting will be held before construction starts. While an official start date has not been set, the city said the plan is to start construction in Spring or Summer of 2018. The project is expected to take four months.

 

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