Construction ahead: Prepare to detour, Woodbury
Closures, detours and frustrated drivers: all signs that summer is on its way to Woodbury.
"It's going to be a messy summer for Woodbury residents on the major roadways," City Engineer Klayton Eckles said.
Indeed it will, with three major roads being fixed up or rebuilt, including roundabouts, bigger lanes and trails.
A big chunk of Woodbury Drive will be closed from the end of April through July, followed by a second phase of construction closing it south of Lake Road to St. Ambrose Church until the fall.
Radio Drive will also see some closures, plus nobody will be able to access Bielenberg Sports Center at all as crews begin work on the expansion project in a few weeks.
Drivers will be able to go east-west on Bailey Road and north onto Radio Drive, but the south leg of the roundabout at that intersection will be closed down to Hargis Parkway starting later this month.
"We're getting three large projects built in one construction season," Eckles said. "Which will be disruptive, it will be difficult for our residents, but I think the alternative would be much more difficult for a much longer period of time."
Woodbury's Public Works Director David Jessup said the first phase of construction will start on Woodbury Drive at Park Crossing/Eagle Valley Drive as the city and Washington County work to upgrade the aging road.
He explained the detours as follows:
Drivers going north on Woodbury Drive will get to Bailey and either go east or west.
Those going east can take Settlers Ridge Parkway up to Valley Creek Road then west to get back onto Woodbury Drive.
If you choose to go west over to Radio Drive, you can then continue north to get to Valley Creek Road, then east to Woodbury Drive.
"You will be able to use the Bailey Road-Woodbury Drive intersection during that period," Jessup said.
The second phase will close Woodbury Drive south of Lake Road down to St. Ambrose Church from Aug. 1 until the end of the construction season.
Detours for that part will be as follows:
Going north on Woodbury Drive will take you to Military Road, to Radio Drive and again east onto Valley Creek to get back onto Woodbury Drive.
Another option would be to take Manning Avenue north to Interstate 94 or back to Valley Creek Road.
"Because the Woodbury Drive and Bailey intersection will be totally closed, the detours will become longer," Jessup said.
But he added those familiar with city streets could avoid detours by navigating the residential areas.
Washington County engineers are also proposing a roundabout reconfiguration at Radio Drive and Bailey Road.
Eckles said the existing roundabout will soon be restriped to be consistent with two new ones being built on Woodbury Drive at Lake and Bailey roads.
The roundabout at Radio and Bailey will be reduced down to two lanes of traffic going east-west, and will stay at four lanes north-south.
"Having four lanes of traffic in each direction requires a more complicated roundabout and we haven't seen the traffic volumes that we were anticipating there," Eckles said.
So instead of entering the roundabout from Bailey Road with two lanes, one of the lanes will be right turn lane only.
"It will simplify the roundabout," he said. "It eliminates some of the conflicts and some of the issues that we've seen there with people having some confusion about how to drive that roundabout."
That work is slated for completion in mid-July.