If you have driven around the city of Shafter in the last couple of weeks, especially trying to get out of town, it has been an adventure. There have been numerous detours and roadblocks that have been making leaving town a little difficult. But, the result of this little inconvenience will likely be much safer and attractive roads.
One of the main projects has been taking place on Lerdo Highway, with lane closures on either side at times, making the way a little slow. The project's aim is to reconstruct stretches of the highway. The project includes full road reconstruction plus replacement of all concrete improvements, such as curbs and gutters, sidewalks and drive approaches. This work is expected to last up to 6 to 8 weeks.
Lerdo Highway has remained open during construction, but the traffic control in place for safety purposes has made travel flow slower. Message boards at the project have provided notice of closures if required.
Another project that has just begun is annual road maintenance on Zerker Road to 7th Standard (Canal Street to Zachary Avenue) and 7th Standard (#1 Lane Friant Canal to Zachary Avenue). The project began on Aug. 28 and will continue through Sept. 5. No road closures are expected, but traffic control will be in place.
One project that has been on a lot of people's minds is the roundabout that has been approved for the intersection of Highway 43 and Los Angeles Avenue. At a recent City Council meeting, Public Works Director Michael James said that the project is on track to begin in 2024, with a designing phase and then construction.
As for the detours that have been in place during the Santa Fe Way shoulder improvement project, they will be completed by next week, according to James. At different times, detours have been in place from Cherry Avenue at the beginning to Galpin Avenue currently. "This project has been completed in record time and the detours should be no more after next week," he said.
This project has widened the road surface of Santa Fe Way, giving motorists and bicyclists a shoulder that can be negotiated. This is to improve the safety of the highway for both vehicles and bicyclists on the road.