MISSOULA – The Montana Department of Transportation is advising that anybody who may be traveling in the Missoula area over the Fourth of July should plan for additional travel time because of ongoing construction projects.
With all of these projects going on and the Fourth fast approaching, MDT is looking for ways to make holiday travel easy.
Projects like the Van Buren interchange, the Russell Street project from Broadway to Dakota and the Missoula ADA project on Orange Street will all see a pause in the action to improve traffic flow.
Rural road projects outside of Missoula will also take a break over the holiday.
“We also have some mobile projects more in the rural areas of Western Montana that there won’t be a work zone set up," said Ed Toavs, District Administrator for MDT. "They will go away along with traffic control. So it will be back to a normal highway condition, so to speak.”
But for those projects in town that will still have a work zone set up, you should continue to obey all traffic controls for your safety.
“When your in the middle of a construction project you still will have an open project you have an active work zone. So even though people aren’t working the traffic control is there to protect the traveling public," Toavs said. "So there could be an obstruction there could be an abrupt edge there could be something that could be harmful for an errant vehicle if we didn’t have the traffic control there.”
Overall, the flow of traffic might be a little easier with a pause in construction, but MDT stresses that you should check for road conditions on their website and plan for extra travel time.
“The importance of this year’s message may be as important as it ever has been is that. Continue to plan for a little bit longer travel times even though there won’t be the construction equipment and the workers out there," Toavs said. "You’re still going to have that traffic control and that reduced speed set up.”
Most construction projects will resume on July 5, but the ADA sidewalk project on Orange Street will wrap up and move to Gerald Avenue for its next stop.