The Dupont Road construction project moved into a new phase on Monday – one that will close the road to through traffic between Lima Rd. and Coldwater Rd. for about four months.
The actual closure is between Salomon Farm and Dawsons Creek Boulevard/La Cabreah Lane. The road will be open only for local traffic – those using Dupont to visit businesses or to access their home.
Through traffic from Coldwater to Lima will have a detour of either Carroll Rd. or Wallen Rd. Traffic delays are expected and motorists should allow for additional travel time in the area.
Improvements to enhance safety for motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians are underway on Dupont between Lima Road and Coldwater Road. Enhancements include expanding the road to four lanes with a turn lane, where needed, adding a sidewalk on the north side of the road and a trail on the south side of the road.
City of Fort Wayne Public Works official Shan Gunawardena said Dupont will be transformed into the urban street it should be, rather than as the county road it functions like now.
“It’s a very heavily traveled corridor,” he explained. “So if you don’t improve it today, it’s just going to get busier and busier and that corridor is going to get more and more congested so we want to get it addressed right now.”
Visitors to Salomon Farm and west of the closure will have access from Lima Road.
“Salomon Park is a really busy park in the summer so even though we know in the long term it’s going to be a great addition,” said Fort Wayne Parks and Recreation official Chuck Reddinger. “It’s going to make that road safe, safer for our patrons. We’re going to have to suffer through a little bit of pain and a lot of communication to our camp and people that are coming.”
Visitors to the Parkview YMCA and businesses east of the closure will have access from Coldwater Road.
“I think we’re a little nervous obviously about our members and our guests because we want to make sure they have the ease and comfort of getting to our facility, but we’re really excited and we think that if they just kind of make the little extra detours around they’re going to be able to get here just fine,” said spokesperson Amy Richardville. “This is just going to be a little short-term annoyance but in the long run, this is actually going to improve accessibility and be a better thing for our community and our members here.”
A pedestrian/bicycle crossing, under the road, will connect the Pufferbelly Trail from Salomon Farm Park to the existing trail north of Dupont Rd. Currently, there is no pedestrian infrastructure on Dupont.
The project, which addresses safety and congestion, will take place over two construction seasons with completion coming in 2019.
Up to 25,000 vehicles use this stretch of Dupont Road each day.