Silver Award – KY 9 Connector-Roundabouts, Newport, KY
Contractor: Prus Construction*
Owner: Kentucky Transportation Cabinet
Engineer: Gresham Smith, Inc.
The construction of the 1.4 mile KY 9 Connector was not just about moving traffic smoothly through the area. The project was essential to economic development in an area where investment was stifled because of high traffic volumes and traffic congestion through residential neighborhoods.
Boasting the first two concrete roundabouts in Kentucky, the project was designed to mitigate the usual stop and start traffic snarls in a busy area. The connector is 10 in. jointed plain concrete with 23 ft. joint spacing. The main roundabout has a 125-ft radius and is a 40-ft-wide roadway for two lanes of traffic, and the second roundabout has a 105-ft radius with a 40-ft-wide roadway and two lanes of traffic. A total of 42,000 SY of concrete was used in the project.
In addition to the connector and two roundabouts, the project also included concrete sidewalks and bicycle lanes to improve safety for pedestrians and bicyclists. Commuters no longer have to wind through neighborhood streets with a multitude of traffic lights and turns to reach Newport and Newport on the Levee, a large entertainment venue.
Shortly after this project was completed, a $1.5 billion dollar development was announced on a 35-acre site in the area. The project will be built on a site that been vacant for 13 years. The new connector, roundabouts and sidewalks not only keeps traffic moving, but also symbolize the vitality and economic hope for this area.
* ACPA member.