City and county officials are planning to travel to Hutchinson, Thursday, for an important highway meeting and they are encouraging more local residents to go also.
Monday morning, members of the Barton County Commission announced they will attend the Kansas Department of Transportation highway meeting that is set to start at 9:30 a.m., according to information from city sources.
Great Bend City Council members also plan to attend, along with other city officials.
The city announcement noted the meeting will be at “the Ramada Hotel and Conference Center, 1400 N. Lorraine, Hutchison. The meeting is scheduled between 9:30 a.m. and 2:15 p.m. and is anticipated to consist of break out groups to discuss proposed KDOT projects. This is the local consultation portion of KDOT’s selection process.”
County Commissioner Jennifer Schartz said Monday this project provides an opportunity for city and county officials to work together on the effort to get the next part of a needed highway improvement project approved.
Barton, Rice and Reno counties continue to support inclusion of the K-96 improvement project for the next round of state highway programs. The project would continue earlier improvements to K-96 highway,
County Administrator Richard Boeckman explained earlier, the current highway in this area, between Hutchinson and Sterling, is curvy, hilly and has very poor shoulders. He said it is “just not a very safe highway.”
Not only would super-two improvements and diagonal direction make the route more efficient for people traveling between here and Hutchinson, and on to Wichita, but it would also be considerably safer.
City Administrator Howard Partington urged earlier that local residents attend the meeting.
He noted it’s important that the community show up to support the program. “We do need a good showing.”
The results of this meeting will contribute to 25 percent of the scoring for the project. Another 25 percent involves economic development issues and 50 percent is based on the engineering criteria, Partington explained.