Representative from USI Consultants presented members of the Marshall County Council with information on the proposed phase II of the Veterans Parkway during their meeting Monday morning. The two mile project would extend Veterans Parkway from North Michigan Road west to Pioneer Drive.
Katie McLear said USI has been working with the Marshall County Commissioners, City of Plymouth and the Plymouth Redevelopment Commission for the potential joint partnership project. She said the city council recently voted unanimously to support applying for federal aid funding this fall for the project.
Greg Wendling, a Transportation Engineer with USI told council members his history with Veterans Parkway started in 2010 when the county hired USI Consultants to study an east west connection across the north part of Plymouth from Pine Road all the way to Linden. He said planning at the county level for this project actually began a few years before that.
Wendling detailed the route saying, “From the round-a-bout on Michigan Road the roadway would head west going diagonally down and shows a round-a-bout at Oak and crosses the railroad track before making the connection at Pioneer.”
Wendling told the council they anticipate submitting the application for funding this falls. If the project is awarded, construction of the project would begin in 2025 and be completed in 2026. The current estimated total cost is just over $14 million with federal funds paying 80% and the city and county paying the 20%. The city would pay 1/3 of the project or just over $900,000 and county’s share would be 2/3rds or $1.95 million.
Explaining the expenses, Wendling said they would be spread out over several years. In 2021 he anticipated a county cost of $200,000; in 2022 it would be $120,000 to $150,000; in 2025 construction would begin and have the highest cost to the county.
The city council is supportive of the project and so are the commissioners. Commissioner Mike Burroughs said the commissioners are supporting this project as long as it doesn’t take money away from the county highway budget. He went on to say, “I want to stress this. We would not be taking anything away from our county highway road projects in the upcoming years.” He said they would budget the Veterans extension separate from any road projects that Jason (Peters, Highway Superintendent) has. Burroughs also said the extension would benefit drivers when INDOT makes U.S. 30 a limited access highway.
Marshall County Council members were supportive of the extension project and voted unanimously to move forward. The application would be submitted late fall with an award announcement anticipated in early 2021.