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The Vermont Agency of Transportation (VTrans) is improving the roadway along the U.S. Routes 2/7 (U.S. 2/7) corridor in the vicinity of Interstate 89 (I-89) Exit 16 to enhance mobility and safety in Colchester, Vermont. The project area extends from the Colchester-Winooski town line north for approximately one mile to just beyond the intersection of Sunderland Woods Road at U.S. 2/7. The current interchange at Exit 16 is a grade-separated tight diamond interchange with I-89 crossing over U.S. 2/7 via two bridges. The existing corridor yields frequent traffic congestion, lengthy delays, and significant queuing during peak hours. These conditions are a safety concern with a high number of incidents, collisions, and a lack of accommodations for non-motorized travel.
The construction for the Exit 16 DDI project is being completed in two phases under two separate contracts, executed sequentially. The first phase of construction, which began in the Winter of 2023 and was completed in the Fall of 2023, focused on utility relocation, ledge removal, drainage work, and the construction of retaining walls. The second phase of construction will consist of the bulk of the roadway work, including the construction of the DDI, the addition of turning lanes at adjacent intersections, upgrades to the existing traffic signals, and the construction of pedestrian and bicycle accommodations. The Project Team anticipates the construction of phase two to continue through 2026.
The first construction season started at the end of January 2023 and continued through early November with the completion of contract 1 for the Exit 16 DDI project. The first construction season started with the removal of subsurface ledge to facilitate future construction activities. The ledge was removed using several methods, including hydraulic hammering, drilling, and blasting. Blasting activities started on April 3 and continued through June 27. The remainder of the construction season focused on relocating utilities, installing drainage infrastructure, and constructing retaining walls beneath the interstate bridges to create a pedestrian/bicycle connection. Crews worked around the clock to complete the work in a single construction season and reduce impacts to the public.
As the first construction season for the Exit 16 Diverging Diamond Interchange (DDI) Project comes to a close, the Project Team would like to elicit your feedback on construction impacts and project outreach to help us facilitate better communication and satisfaction throughout the remainder of construction.
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