Lynchburg, VA -It's what a lot of Liberty University students and staff have been waiting for. Thursday night the school is opening up its new tunnel on Wards Road.
Crews originally hoped to have this up and running by the end of January, but they encountered some road blocks in the building process, as construction projects often do.
The tunnel looks quite similar to other ones around town, but it was built very differently. Two concrete boxes have been moving almost constantly over the past several months, pushing the earth out of their way in the process. Construction crews used this method, they say for the first time in the U.S., because this tunnel runs underneath Norfolk Southern train tracks.
But in LU's effort to avoid disrupting the trains, they bought themselves some extra work time. We're told this past winter was so cold that it froze the ground, and made moving that earth much more difficult.
However, now the long-awaited tunnel with two sides for traffic and sidewalks for pedestrians, is complete. LU officials say this, along with the 1,400 space parking garage they're building on campus, should decrease traffic and noise.
Due to this opening students and staff should also take note of traffic pattern changes to Regents Parkway, as well as the closing of the railroad crossing near Sonic.