Harney Street viaduct to finish early, may spur development
The Harney Street viaduct project led by the Wyoming Department of Transportation is expected to finish July of 2018.
While there are finishing touches needed, the project will reach substantial completion mid-July, said Wyoming Department of Transportation Resident Engineer Steve Cook.
“We still have quite a bit of electrical work to go,” said Cook. He added that landscaping, some pavement work and a signal on Snowy Range and Cedar are all still on the docket.
Despite the to-do list of finishing steps, the bridge will be finished ahead of the scheduled due date of fall 2018. The early due date comes after mild weather throughout the project.
“It’s gone well,” said Cook. “It was in the winter months when we started, and we had a good spring. I’m not sure where we would have been if we would have had a really wet spring.”
The project has gone well from the standpoint of the City of Laramie Planning Office, as well.
“It’s a way of new access into the West Side,” said City of Laramie Planning Manager Derek Teini.
Teini said this project will not only provide access, but possible development and redevelopment on both sides of the viaduct. The vehicular and pedestrian traffic will significantly increase in that area.
“When you see more traffic, you see more stores wanting to locate,” said Teini. “When you see development of new stores and buildings, you’ll see redevelopment there.”
Looking to the future not only means development near Harney Street, but also new developments for Clark Street.
“I’ll be really busy working on the demo for the Clark Street Bridge,” said Cook referencing the next steps of the Laramie project.
There have been several discussions surrounding the absence of the Clark Street Bridge including green spaces ad parking. Teini said there will still be right-of-way access to businesses and residences on both sides of the railroad tracks.
“There will be a set of discussions of what we’ll want to do with that area,” said Teini. Adding that the downtown masterplan outlines back-in angled parking.
Overall, traffic flow will be increased with four lanes all along Third Street to west Laramie