WICHITA, Kan - Sedgwick County commissioners have unanimously approved an agreement with the city of Wichita to begin planning and work on a project to improve a major highway interchange.
The city and county and business leaders have been working on plans to improve the North Junction interchange, which connects I-135, K-96, K-254 and I-235. The project will make improvements to improve safety and traffic flow.
Phase one involves some preparatory work and right-of-way purchases, and work is expected to begin next year. The city and county are dividing the $1 million cost of the initial work. The second phase will begin the actual improvements, and that work may not begin until around 2022. Wichita is hiring a consulting firm to help with applications for federal grants that could provide up to $25 million for the project. It could also be included in a future highway program developed by the Kansas Legislature.
County commission chairman David Dennis said "we have to get the next phases going before we can see that the junction is really going to become more safe and also able to move the traffic that we need to move for the next 50 years."