WATERLOO — A stretch of U.S. Highway 63 is expected to be closed next week in preparation for next year’s major reconstruction project.

The Iowa Department of Transportation is planning to close U.S. 63 in both directions between Dane and Newell streets from 7 a.m. Monday and reopen it Sept. 18, weather permitting.

Contractors will be installing a groundwater suppression system at the Canadian National Railway underpass, which will help keep the construction site dry when the highway is reconstructed between Franklin and Newell streets starting next year.

Motorists next week will be detoured around the construction zone on an official detour using Airline Highway, Airport Boulevard and U.S. Highway 218.

The DOT urges motorists to drive with caution, obey the posted speed limit and other signs in the work area, and be aware traffic fines for moving violations are at least double in work zones.

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State transportation officials approved a $26.4 million contract with Peterson Contractors Inc. of Reinbeck in June to rebuild the highway between Franklin and Newell streets and erect a bridge over the railroad tracks, replacing the often-flooded underpass.

Traffic will be detoured around the overpass section starting next spring for the project, which is expected to wrap up in 2019.

The overpass is the final stage of an overall rebuilding of U.S. 63 from downtown Waterloo north to Donald Street, near UnityPoint Health-Allen Hospital.

Langman Construction Inc. of Rock Island, Ill., is currently working on a $19.4 million rebuilding of the one-way couplet of Mullan Avenue and East First Street from Jefferson Street to Franklin.

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Waterloo City Reporter

Waterloo city reporter for the Courier

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