Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Work Zone Wednesday: A closer look at maintenance efforts across the state

There are many unsung heroes that work along the side of the roads and behind the scenes to help maintain the highways. In today’s Work Zone Wednesday, we will look at a few ways KDOT maintenance crews work to keep Kansas moving.

Mowing
Troy Whitworth, KDOT’s Assistant to the Director of Operations, said one of the ways KDOT maintains the highways is by mowing any excessively tall grass and weedy areas around intersections, curve ramps and entrances. Mowing these areas helps to improve sight distance.  He said KDOT crews usually operate medium duty farm type tractors with brush hog mowers that have 10 feet or 15 feet mower decks.

Burke Richter, a KDOT Equipment Operatorr, mows grass along U.S 156 east of Garden City. 

Some grasses and plants that grow alongside Kansas highways are visually appealing and serve as natural habitat for wildlife. Because of this, KDOT has partnered with the Kansas Audubon Society to develop a mowing policy that accomplishes roadside management that is both beautiful and functional along our roadways.
David Shaw, a KDOT Equipment Operator, mows grass along the U.S. 50 bypass near Dodge City.

Painting
KDOT maintenance truck lays down fresh painted
lines along the highway
Whitworth said that painting lines on our highways provides traffic guidance and are important to let drivers know where they are while driving on the roadway.

“Painting pavement lines provides defined lanes for the traveling public to drive in,” Whitworth said. “By using the painted lines, you will know if you are driving on two-lane roadway with head-to-head traffic or a multi-lane highway where the traffic is all traveling the same direction. Without the pavement lines, you may not have a frame of reference for the roadway at times of low light, night time or during inclement weather.”

KDOT’s paint is embedded with reflective glass beads that cause light refraction, which makes the lines glow when headlights shine on them at night. The longevity of the reflective lines can vary and sometimes maintenance crews are dispatched to repaint the lines, especially after a bad winter. Snow plows can damage the pavement markings by scraping off the reflective beads while clearing the roadways.

Signing

KDOT Maintenance crews update a speed limit sign in this photo from 2011.

Whitworth said that there are three types of signs along the roadway: Regulatory, warning and guide signs. Regulatory signs alert drivers of the laws and regulations that are enforceable. Warning signs guide the driver when it comes to making important decisions on how to operate the vehicle. Guide signs provide the driver with navigational information.

KDOT signs are typically made of aluminum metal sheets and are cut or stamped out of the shape that is required for a specific sign, such as an octagonal stop sign.
KDOT crews install signs along state highways.

“The adhesive material that is applied to the aluminum shape may have a reflective quality to it and is pressed into the aluminum shape,” Whitworth said. “Typically, the sign shape has holes that are cut during the stamping process, which allows workers to mount the sign.”

There are times when a sign may need to be repaired or replaced.

“If the sign face is worn, faded or the reflective sheeting is damaged, we may need to replace the sign if it no longer serves its purpose,” Whitworth said.

KDOT maintenance workers face several challenges while working along the highways.
“Traffic and traffic control are some of the challenges of working on the roadway,” Whitworth said. “Traffic speeds and inattentive drivers can really cause issues during any work that is being done on or near the roadway. Our employees are also out in extreme conditions throughout the various seasons.”

Remember to slow down in work zones and always be aware of your surroundings. Never use your cell phone while driving and look out for highway workers.




Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Inside a KDOT maintenance shop

At any point during the year, you may see maintenance crews working along highways or clearing roads to keep Kansas moving. But have you ever wondered what goes on behind the scenes in a Kansas Department of Transportation maintenance shop?
A slope mower was being worked on at the KDOT
District One Area Four Shop in Topeka. 

At the KDOT District One, Area Four Shop in Topeka, miracles and memories are being made every day, according to James “Jim Bob” Beauchamp, a KDOT Equipment Mechanic.

When we visited the shop, there were a few agency machines that were being worked on. A slope mower was being modified for the specialized purpose of maintaining landscape upkeep in Kansas’ capital city.

Manufactured in 2009, the slope mower reaches challenging mowing places easily and keeps the Topeka area looking its best.  Because the rocky slopes of Topeka can be difficult to mow, KDOT mechanics are strengthening their original slope mower. According to Jim Bob, the frame of the mower was cracked from the stress it was put under. In addition to ordering a new frame, the KDOT mechanics also had the frame welded in short segments and then welded it to reinforce the frame and enhance its durability. They were also rebuilding the engine of the slope mower.

A Bobcat was being worked on at the KDOT  District One Area Four 
Shop in Topeka. 
Mechanics at the shop were also working on a Bobcat. This piece of machinery is used for maintenance, such as digging holes, cleaning up job sites, concrete patching, asphalt repair, removing brush and lifting and loading trucks using fork attachments.



The Bobcat was in the shop because it needed a new drive motor. The machine is powered by hydraulics and needs the drive motor to pump oil.
According to Jim Bob, once the drive motor is set in place, the hydraulic pump provides motive power to work. The drive motor propels the machine forward, and pumps oil. This part is also important because it gives the machine turning ability and allows it to spin around.

KDOT employees across the state work hard in all our district and area shops, and they are essential to the work the agency does for Kansans. By providing important maintenance to state equipment, they help keep Kansas moving.





Monday, August 28, 2017

Motoring Mondays: The International Pancake Day Hall of Fame


The International Pancake Day Hall of Fame, located in Liberal, commemorates the internationally known Pancake Race, which happens every year on Shrove Tuesday in February.

The racing competition was initiated in 1950 between Liberal and Olney, England, and centers on women running down town streets while flipping pancakes, simultaneously in each city.

 In addition to the pancake race, the town of Liberal also hosts pancake eating contests, flipping contests, a parade and other festivities.

The Hall of Fame was created in 2005 and is dedicated to preserving the history of Pancake Day through the years. It serves as the headquarters for the acclaimed event on Shrove Tuesday.

The Hall of Fame is also used as a gathering place for community events and educational purposes.

This facility operates by appointment only, but International Pancake Day is open to everyone.


Visit
International Pancake Day to learn more about Liberal’s most exciting day of the year and the headquarters that runs it.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Special Delivery: Large aircraft transported across multiple states requires extra planning

The F-35 production aircraft made its way through South Central Kansas and Wichita on Monday, Aug. 21 

It was a long but successful trip as Lockheed Martin Aeronautics in Fort Worth, Texas, provided an F-35 production aircraft to the National Institute for Aircraft Research in Wichita as part of an aircraft disassembly program.


This is a non-flying production aircraft, and as such, required transportation over the road on a specially-designed fixture/trailer. The aircraft has been disassembled to the smallest dimension possible, but the aircraft still requires an oversize permit for transport through Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas.

The fuselage and shipping fixture weighs approximately 27,000 pounds. It is 48 feet long, 35.5 feet wide and 9.5 feet high. The aircraft’s travel route started in Ft. Worth on Aug. 19 and entered Oklahoma on Aug. 20. It traveled through Kansas on Aug. 21 along U.S. 77, K-15 and I-135 until it reached its final destination 2.5 miles east of Valley Center before noon.

The F-35 production aircraft made its way through South Central Kansas and Wichita on Monday, Aug. 21 
“They had a pretty good escort from the KHP and some other law enforcement officers, as well as our own KDOT maintenance folks,” said Wichita Metro Engineer Don Snyder. “ All of the on ramps were properly blocked off to keep the load moving down the road without any interference from other traffic.”

KDOT’s Director of Aviation Merrill Atwater said that transporting an aircraft of this size doesn’t happen very often in this part of the country.

“The aircraft is incredible,” Atwater said.  “How cool is it that we had the opportunity to help manage the logistics for taking an aircraft across about one-third of our state without any hiccups? That’s a lot of coordination and effort and those involved in the planning process deserve big kudos for getting that done.”

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

ICYMI: The Great American Solar Eclipse wrap up

Millions of Americans watched the skies as the Great American Solar Eclipse took place on Monday. Here are some highlights from parts of the state.


Atchison- The Northeast corner of Kansas was directly in the path of Totality. Although the view was blocked by the clouds, there was a slight window where the spectacle could be seen. Despite the cloud cover, night still fell during midday and The Amelia Earhart Memorial Bridge lit up the sky.

Here is our video of the event in Atchison: 




The Amelia Earhart Memorial Bridge in Atchison lit up during the Great American Solar Eclipse on Monday. 


A shot of the moon moving across the sun during the Great American
Solar Eclipse.

A shot of the moon moving across the sun during the Great American
Solar Eclipse.

A shot of the moon moving across the sun during the Great American
Solar Eclipse
.
Norton- 
A "natural pinhole camera" produced by gaps in the leaves of trees project solar disc shadows on the ground in Norton.


Here's a video from ABC News covering the event from coast to coast:

Do you have photos of the Total Eclipse? Share them with us! 

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Johnson County Gateway named one of nation’s top transportation projects

The Johnson County Gateway Project Phase two was KDOT's first design-build project.

KDOT’s Johnson County Gateway Phase 2 project has been named one of the Top 12 national finalists in the 2017 America’s Transportation Awards competition.


The $288 million project, the first and largest design-build transportation project completed in Kansas, emerged as a finalist out of a record 92 project nominations from 38 states. The Johnson County Gateway project will now compete for the grand prize and the People’s Choice Award.

The grand prize will be determined by an independent panel of transportation industry experts. The People’s Choice Award will be decided by online popular vote, with votes scaled to state populations. Online voting is now underway and continues through midnight on Thursday, Sept. 21. Kansans are encouraged to cast a vote for the project by visiting the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) website at http://AmericasTransportationAwards.org. Individuals can vote once a day.

“The Johnson County Gateway is a vital economic corridor, not only for the region but for the state of Kansas,” said Gov. Sam Brownback. “As the improvements achieved through this project encourage new development opportunities and job growth, the economic benefit is expected to exceed $1 billion over the next two decades. I am pleased to see the Gateway recognized as one of the top transportation projects in the nation.”

The Johnson County Gateway included reconstruction and capacity improvements within the I-435, I-35 and K-10 interchange area along with improvements at several major local interchanges. Within the project area, there were 56 new lane miles added as well as 22 new and five rehabilitated bridges, including three new two-lane flyover bridge ramps and widened bridges on I-435 and I-35.

The America’s Transportation Awards competition is celebrating its 10th year and is sponsored by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials, AAA and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Motoring Mondays: Kansas Waterfalls


The Deep Creek Waterfall at Pillsbury Crossing
There are numerous beautiful natural waterfalls located throughout the state.


Elk Falls (Elk County)
Infamously known for being the “World’s Largest Ghost town,” it also is home to the Elk River and the Elk Falls.
Overland Park Arboretum (Johnson county)
The waterfall is located in the heart of the park, surrounded by nature walks and trails –a gorgeous and peaceful place to escape the city.
Located next to the vintage Flour Mill, the waterfall is surrounded by a forest of greenery.
Cedar Creek Falls (Johnson County)
In addition to the tranquility of the waterfall, Lake Olathe has great fishing locations directly below the falls.
Soden’s Dam Falls (Lyon County)
The source of this waterfall is from the Cottonwood River. It is also located near the Soden's Grove Bridge, a concrete rainbow arch bridge. 
Chase Lake Falls (Chase County)
Cottonwood Falls may be a rural town but it is also home to beautiful waterfalls.
A hidden gem of Kansas, this waterfall has many surrounding hiking trails and great fishing spots.
Cowley Lake (Cowley County)
Cowley Lake has been on the “Must See” list of AARP, Yahoo and Most Amazing in the World.
Kanopolis Lake and Waterfalls (Ellsworth County)
The lake is located in the Kanoplis State Park, where Dakota sandstone bluffs and Horsethief Canyon caves are also main tourist attractions.











 

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Safety tips for the Great American Solar Eclipse


August 21, or “The Great American Total Solar Eclipse of 2017” as it has been dubbed by some, is sure to be a memorable day as people celebrate this exciting astronomical event.

A total solar eclipse occurs when the moon passes directly in front of the sun, darkening the sky. According to NASA’s website, the sun will be completely obstructed from view for about 2 minutes and 43 seconds. For this reason, Kansas Department of Transportation encourages travelers to take safety precautions and prepare for a safe place to stay and view the event.

Are you planning on traveling to reach the best view of the eclipse in Kansas? According to Topeka Capital-Journal, “In Kansas, the path of totality will cross Hiawatha, Atchison, Leavenworth, and on the very edge, Kansas City. Topeka will experience a partial eclipse, with Holton being on the outermost edge of the path of totality.” The path of totality is the area where the sun will be completely blocked from view.

According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, approximately 200 million people live within driving distance of the eclipse’s path of totality. An increase in traffic and travel time is expected on August 21.

Some safety measures to be aware of are included in the list below. Please read carefully and be safe this August 21 – but don’t forget to enjoy this one-in-a-lifetime experience!

  • Do not pull over to the side of the highway to observe the eclipse. Exit the highway to a safe location to view and/or photograph the event.
  • Do not take photos while driving - KDOT reminds motorists to always maintain full awareness when driving to help maintain safety for all other drivers and pedestrians.
  • Do not wear opaque eclipse glasses while driving.
  • Be prepared for potential traffic congestion before, during, and after the event - While only the northeast corner of the state will be in the path of totality for the solar eclipse, the rest of Kansas will still see part of the astronomical event.
  • Turn on vehicle headlights and do not rely solely on automatic headlights during the eclipse. - Because the sky will be darkened, the use of headlights during the eclipse will be needed.  
  • Pack an emergency travel kit - Check out our blog here for a list of suggested items to include in your safety kit.
  • Plan ahead for fuel needs - Always remember to keep your gas tank full during long trips.

To all our Kansas motorist and travelers: check the weather and plan accordingly - make sure to dress properly and be fully prepared for potential weather incidents when driving long distances. Check www.kandrive.org for road conditions affected by the weather or construction.

Excited to learn more? Visit the NASA website at https://eclipse2017.nasa.gov/ to learn more about #SolarEclipse2017.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Work Zone Wednesday: Multi-phase bridge project along I-70

Work continues on the multi-phase bridge project along I-70 in Ellis County. The project is expected to be completely finished in December, weather permitting. 
Work is progressing on a multi-phase bridge project along I-70 in eastern Ellis County.

Both the east and westbound bridges carrying I-70 over Old Highway 40 and the Union Pacific railroad near Walker have undergone major renovations. The project started in fall 2016 with the installation of temporary crossovers in preparation for the bridge deck replacements and concrete patching and overlays that have taken place this spring and summer.

The eastbound portion was completed at the end of July and work is currently taking place on the westbound structures. Work is expected to be finished by the end of October. The temporary crossovers will then be removed and the project completely finished in December.


Bridges Inc. of Newton is the primary contractor with a total project cost of approximately $2 million.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

KDOT deploys first statewide drone traffic management initiative in the nation

The Kansas Department of Transportation announced on Tuesday, Aug. 8, that it is partnering with AirMap, Inc. to deploy the first statewide Unmanned Traffic Management (UTM) initiative in the United States.
Through the AirMap UTM technology, Kansas will implement an airport notification and awareness system for drones. This airspace management system will be made available to airports across the state. Participating airports will be able to accept digital flight notices, communicate with drone operators, and prepare for UTM milestones on the horizon, such as automating airspace notification and authorization for commercial drone flights.
“Strong leaders set the pace, and we’re proud to see the rapid growth of Kansas UAS advance to a national level,” stated Lieutenant Governor Jeff Colyer. “This initiative continues a proud tradition of leadership and excellence in aviation.”
Kansas airports, state agencies, and higher education institutions across the state will receive access to the AirMap platform. Training will be offered to support local drone operations and provide safety-critical information.
“This partnership will support a strong foundation for air traffic safety in Kansas,” said Richard Carlson, Secretary of Transportation. “Together, we will foster an environment that allows unmanned systems to contribute to the state economy.”
AirMap is the world’s leading airspace management platform for drones. Millions of drones, hundreds of drone manufacturers and developers, and hundreds of airspace managers and stakeholders rely on AirMap’s airspace intelligence and services to fly safely and communicate with others in low-altitude airspace.

Aviation activity accounts for more than $20.6 billion in economic impact for the state, with over 73% of the world’s general aviation fleet manufactured in Kansas and more than 700 aerospace and aviation companies located here. More than 18 years of active UAS research – including one of the first UAS Bachelor’s degrees in the country – add to Kansas’s industry leadership. 

Monday, August 14, 2017

Motoring Mondays: The Riverside Park and Ralph Mitchell Zoo

*
Monkey Island is a popular exhibit at the Ralph Mitchell Zoo in Independence, KS
The Riverside Park and Ralph Mitchell Zoo is located in Independence.
     Since the early 20th century, the Riverside Park has been an asset to the community, with amusement attractions and beautiful landscapes.
     The park also features the Ralph Mitchell Zoo, which was added to the park in 1925. It features numerous animal exhibits, most notably, Monkey Island, which was famous for being the birth place of Miss Able, the first non-communist monkey launched into space in 1959.
     It’s a great place for field trips, wedding receptions or just a fun place to go with family or friends to spend the day in nature.
     The park is open every day from 9 a.m. thru 7 p.m.

Bears can be seen at the Ralph Mitchell Zoo in Independence, KS
 To learn more about this historical park and zoo, visit Riverside Park and Ralph Mitchell Zoo.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Class is in session: Back to school safety tips


For many students across Kansas, the start of the school year is approaching. Motorists are encouraged to remember that students will soon be walking or biking to and from school, as well as entering or exiting buses and vehicles. Give yourself extra travel time and pay attention to help improve safety for everyone.

According to the National Safety Council, more children are hit by cars near schools than any other location. If you are dropping your child off at school, make sure you understand your school’s drop off and pick-up procedure.



When sharing the road with young pedestrians, it is important to keep the following in mind:
  • No matter where the pedestrians may be, always use extreme caution. Young students may not understand all the traffic laws and it’s up to motorists to avoid hitting them.
  • If a vehicle is stopped for pedestrians, don’t pass.
  • Use your eyes, and look out for children who may be playing in playgrounds, parks and residential areas.
  • When flashers are blinking in a school zone, stop and yield to pedestrians crossing the intersection or crosswalk.
  • Don’t block crosswalks when stopped at a red light or preparing to turn. Forcing pedestrians to go around you is dangerous and puts them in the path of oncoming traffic.



Bicycling is one of the most popular ways that children travel to school. On certain roads, most bicyclists have the same rights and responsibilities as vehicles. Unfortunately, children riding bikes can be unpredictable and young bicyclists may not understand all the laws surrounding traffic safety. 

Because bikes are smaller than a normal vehicle, the following should be considered:

  • When passing a bicyclist, do so slowly and leave about 3 feet between the bicyclist and your vehicle.
  • Wait for riders coming from the opposite direction to pass before you turn left.
  • If you are turning right and a bicyclist is behind you, it better to let the bicyclist go through the intersection first before you finish making your turn.
  • Always use your blinkers to communicate with all forms of vehicles, especially bicyclists.
  • Young bikers can turn in front of cars with little to no warning and they may not be paying attention. Always stay alert.
  • When traveling in school zones, expect the unexpected. Check for bikes coming from behind parked cars and drive ways.


Some children rely on the school bus for transportation. If you find yourself behind a school bus, allow for greater distance between yourself and the larger vehicle. Doing so will give you more time to stop.

It is illegal in all 50 states to pass a school bus that is stopped and waiting for children to board or depart the vehicle. With that in mind, there are more things to remember when sharing the road with a school bus:

  • Stop far enough away from a school bus to allow the children to enter or depart safely. A 10-foot area around the bus can be the most dangerous for children.
  • If the yellow or red lights are flashing and stop arm is extending traffic MUST stop.
  • Be alert! Children can be unpredictable.


Parents or guardians of children should try to teach students ways they can improve safety during the school year and any time they need to interact with vehicles.


We wish all students who are starting their new school year the best of luck! And remember to always look left, then right and left again before crossing the street.

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Work Zone Wednesday: Modernization project on K-7 in Cherokee County


Work on the final leg of the modernization project in Cherokee County. 

Work is progressing on the final leg of the T-WORKS modernization project on K-7 in Cherokee County. The entire improvement begins at the U.S. 400/K-7 junction at Cherokee and continues south for 11 miles to the U.S. 69/U.S. 160/K-7 junction at Columbus.

The project started in 2016 with the reconstruction of four miles between U.S. 400 and K-102. The southern seven-mile-long section, from K-102 south to Columbus, closed for construction in early June. The highway’s driving surface is being widened to 44 feet, with 12-foot lanes and 10-foot shoulders. Project activity includes major modifications to the existing highway alignment, grouting old mine shafts underneath the roadway, and bridge repairs.

At this point in construction the contractor is grading and building simple span bridges and box culverts on the closed section. The official detour route for K-7 traffic is signed along U.S. 160, U.S. 69/400 and U.S. 400.

Work on the final leg of the modernization project in Cherokee County. 

KDOT awarded the K-7 construction contract of $35.4 million to Koss Construction Company of Topeka. The road work is expected to be finished and K-7 reopened to traffic by mid-August 2018.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Contests aim to Put the Brakes on Fatalities



Kansas kids can win great prizes and learn about traffic safety by participating in poster and video contests as part of the annual Put the Brakes on Fatalities Day safety campaign.

Poster contest: For Kansas kids ages 5 to 13 - three statewide winners will each receive:
sKindle Fire Tablet and case from the Kansas Turnpike Authority;
s$50 gift card from Wal Mart;
s$50 Amazon gift card from the Petroleum Marketers and Convenience Store
Association of Kansas;
sMovie passes from AAA Kansas.

A total of 18 regional winners in the six regions and age groups (ages 5-7, ages 8-10 and ages 11-13) will receive a bicycle and a helmet from Safe Kids Kansas. Poster entries must be postmarked by Friday, Sept. 22. Information and entry forms are available here.

Video contest: For Kansas teens in grades 8-12. Prizes include an iPad, a Go Pro and a DJI Osmo camera, and the school of the grand prize winner will receive $500 for its booster club. Video entries must be posted by 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 24. Information to submit entries is available here.

The Kansas Department of Transportation, the Kansas Highway Patrol and other traffic safety organizations are sponsoring the contests.

Previous winners from the last years’ contest are listed below and can be found here

2016 Poster Contest Winners -
Northeast Kansas - Evangeline Ensign, Olathe; Austin Lamb, Osage City; Sierra de Koning, Axtell
North Central Kansas - Geni Turk, Barnes; Kelsay Mueller, Palmer; Jaydrian Jackson, Clifton
Northwest Kansas - Lucas Hansen, Almena; Christian Miller, Gorham; Makenzie Storz, Phillipsburg
Southeast Kansas - Brooklyn Green-Lawson, Riverton; Maelee Dunn, Galena; Thea Hetlinger, Parsons
South Central Kansas - Adain Smith, Andover; Von Woleslagel, Hutchinson; Natalie Williams, Great Bend
Southwest Kansas - Cadence Sherman, Meade; Kayleigh Flores, Moscow; David Doan, Garden City                               

2016 Video Contest winners –
sStudents from Wichita East High School won first place.
sStudents in Cardinal Productions at Eudora High School won second place. sStudents from Spring Hill Middle School won third place.

Monday, August 7, 2017

Motoring Mondays: U.S. 36 Highway Treasure Hunt

The U.S. 36 Highway Association sponsors the annual U.S. 36
Highway Treasure Hunt the third weekend in September.

The U.S. 36 Highway Association sponsors the annual U.S 36 Highway Treasure Hunt the third weekend of September. This year, it will be Sept. 15 thru 17. This event gives people the opportunity to shop garage and antique sales along U.S. 36. It spans 400 miles across the northern part of Kansas through 13 counties, from Cheyenne County to Doniphan County.

The event helps promote local businesses that are located along U.S. 36 which encourages motorist to travel and helps the economic welfare of the communities along the route. More than 35 towns participate in this event. Click here to see a short video highlighting the sales and other things to see along the route.

The history of the event is rooted in the Pony Express, which occurred from 1860-1861, and still follows the original route from St. Joseph, Mo., to Marysville.

U.S. 36. is the only Kansas highway with four geological regions on its route.

To learn more about this statewide event, visit the official website for US. 36 Highway Association. Maps of the sales locations in cities along U.S. 36 will be available later this month on this website as well.


Thursday, August 3, 2017

Queue detection and warning system installation one of approved projects in July lettings

Railroad crossing on K-196 in Harvey County.
The installation of a queue detection and warning system at a railroad crossing on K-196 in Harvey County is one of the approved projects in KDOT’s July letting. The system warns eastbound approaching traffic to be prepared to stop if there is any vehicle stopped at the crossing.  Trucks require more breaking time than a standard vehicle, this system will be helpful for the approaching truck traffic by providing that advance warning.  The flashing beacons tied to the detection will warn all vehicles that they need to be prepared to stop.
Phillips Southern Electric Company Inc., of Wichita is the contractor on the $62,560 project.

To see all of the projects approved in July’s letting, click here.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Work Zone Wednesday: U.S. 83 in Haskell County


In July 2016, work began on the construction of a new alignment of U.S. 83 and construction of an interchange at the junction of U.S. 83/U.S. 160/K-144 in Haskell County. Passing lanes are also being added to the new alignment of U.S. 83.


As work continues on the project , and traffic shifted to new alignment on Tuesday, July 25.  With the interchange close to completion, dirt work and some paving has also been completed on the approach ramps to the interchange. 

The project is expected to be completed in November.

Venture Corporation of Great Bend is the contractor on this $22.3 million project.


Tuesday, August 1, 2017

#IAMKDOT: Jason Dlugopolski


This month’s #IAMKDOT feature is Jason Dlugopolski who is an Equipment Operator Specialist in the Kansas City Metro Area. Jason began his career with KDOT in October 1999, as an Equipment Operator Trainee at the Lamar Subarea and has worked his way up to his current position in the agency.

“I was lucky to fall into a shop that I have really enjoyed working at through all these years,” Jason said.

When he is not working at KDOT, Jason is a part time instructor at Johnson County Community College where he teaches students how to receive their CDL. He is a husband, foster parent, father, brother and son, as well as a Knight of Columbus..

#IAMKDOT is an illustration project that recognizes KDOT employees who work hard to keep Kansans moving. This series also serves as a reminder for travelers to slow down and remember that underneath those neon vests are individuals with families, friends and hobbies waiting for them at home.


Do you know a KDOT worker that deserves recognition? Nominations are open! Email 
Mallory.Goeke@KS.gov today to get started!