A $45 million federal grant will help Oklahoma fix crumbling roads and bridges in West Tulsa.
The Oklahoma Department of Transportation says nearly 85,000 vehicles travel on I-44 between the Arkansas River and I-244 each day. That has led to a lot of wear and tear and safety concerns.
“It is the oldest section of interstate that we have on our system right now,” said ODOT’s Kenna Mitchell. “Drivers in the area certainly know it’s got narrow lanes, the bridges are narrow, they are aging.”
The grant, spearheaded by Senators Jim Inhofe and James Lankford, will help pay for a $110 million project to fix two bridges on I-44 between I-244 and Highway 75.
“When they look to the east of the Arkansas River and see the striking difference over there, especially the past few years, we know we need to do something on this side of the river as well,” Mitchell said.
Down the road, the project also continues the six-lane expansion of I-44 from the river to Union Avenue, as well as redoing the interchange at Highway 75.
Some bridge sections have completely fallen apart. ODOT still does not have a timetable for the project, but says the $45 million will help accelerate it.