Valley commuters who use a stretch of Upriver Drive will have to find a new route for the next six months.
Starting December 8, a quarter-mile stretch of Upriver will be closed for construction. The road-widening project should be done and the road reopened in April.
Crews will be working on a quarter-mile stretch of Upriver, from 1-1/2 miles east of the Argonne Road intersection to just west of Plantes Ferry Park. The rest of Upriver Drive will remain open.
The contractor, Westway Construction of Nine Miles Falls, will almost double the width of the roadway and level and straighten curves. Both lanes will be widened and shoulders added to both sides.
The $1.3 million project also includes adding a bike path to connect severed parts of the Centennial Trail at Plantes Ferry Park. A footbridge over Lost Creek will be added to the trail in the park.
About 12,691 vehicles per day travel on Upriver Drive at Argonne Road intersection, according to county traffic counts this fall.
Plantes Ferry Park will remain open during the construction project.
Traffic traveling eastbound on Upriver will be rerouted south on Argonne to Trent, then east on Trent to Evergreen, north on Evergreen to Wellesley. The westbound detour follows the same route. The entire detour will be marked with orange and black signs.
There’s plenty of ongoing activity at the park.
Partial construction has begun on a new 35-acre youth sports complex, which will eventually have 14 soccer fields, five softball fields, a picnic area and playground. The first phase, which includes five soccer fields and two softball fields, will be completed by next December, said county parks manager Wyn Birkenthal.
Artist David Govedare’s life-size steel sculpture of Antoine Plante, the pioneer after whom the park is named, will be unveiled in the park next spring to coincide with the reopening of Upriver Drive.