TOPEKA, Kan. — If you’re a regular on the Kansas Turnpike, you probably have taken notice of minor construction delays as you pass under bridges from Emporia to Topeka.

That’s because crews are raising several of those bridges to accommodate commercial traffic, according to the Kansas Turnpike Authority.

Construction crews are disconnecting the bridges from their supports, using hydraulic pumps to lift the bridge to their new standard height of 15 feet 9 inches, then reconnecting the bridge to the supports. The final step is raising the grades on the local roads that approach the bridge.

“Many of these bridges are 50 years old,” said Amanda Miller, communications specialist for the Kansas Turnpike. “This is a cost-effective way to keep commercial traffic moving in Kansas.”

The project to raise the bridges began in 2015. It takes six weeks, on average, to lift a bridge, Miller told 27 News.

Other bridges being lifted include:

  • MM 131.23
  • MM 139.61
  • MM 145.67
  • MM 153.12
  • MM 154.93
  • MM 156.55
  • MM 161.03

The bridges being lifted this year are all between Emporia and Topeka. The turnpike expects to raise 50 bridges over the next decade, according to KTA.

The Kansas Turnpike provides a closer look at bridge raising, click here to watch.

Drivers are urged to check for traffic impacts at KanDrive.org.

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