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County gets infrastructure grant

Chad Frey
The Kansan

Harvey County will be able to move forward of a bridge replacement project on SE 36th East of Newton after being awarded state cost-sharing funds. 

“To partner with KDOT on bridge programs is always exciting news. We have 200 bridges in Harvey County. Without this type of program, we would not be able to maintain the integrity of all our bridges,” said commissioner Chip Westfall. 

Governor Laura Kelly recently announced Harvey County was been selected to receive funding as part of the Kansas Local Bridge Improvement Program.  This year’s selections include 27 counties and three cities who will receive a combined total of $5.1 million.

“Congratulations to Harvey County for submitting a successful application and securing local matching funds for a bridge project that is critical to the community’s success,” Governor Laura Kelly said. “Improving the overall transportation system across our state is integral to our economic recovery, and an important step forward as we work to invest in and rebuild our state’s foundation.”

The bridge in Harvey County being replaced under the program is 6 miles east of Newton on SE 36th Street.

“Cost share programs are important to all counties,” said Commissioner Westfall. “Without them, many roads and rural bridges would have to be closed.”

KDOT reinstated this bridge program in 2019 to assist cities and counties by providing up to $150,000 toward the replacement or rehabilitation of a bridge on the local roadway system. For this recent round of KLBIP selections, a total of 68 applications from 61 local public agencies were received with requests for $11.4 million in funds. The total value of the individual bridge replacement costs ranged from $150,000 to $2.4 million.

The KLBIP targets bridges 20-50 feet in length and with a daily vehicle count of less than 100. Of the nearly 25,000 total bridges on the roadway system – approximately 19,000 of them owned by local entities – over 5,700 have ratings or characteristics that make them eligible for replacement under this program