Lynchburg, VA- A section of road in Lynchburg that has been closed for nearly two years, is finally opening back up. As a sign of progress in the Midtown Connector project, Fort Avenue will now be open at the intersection of Kemper Street.
Starting Saturday, you'll have a few more options at that intersection, and it will also be open in both directions. But this is only a small victory in this giant construction battle. Detours in that area will still be a way of life for the next year.
It took several years, some finagling of finances, and a lot of tough work, but the new and improved Fort Avenue Bridge is now open for business.
"It's very detailed and difficult work rebuilding all of our infrastructure. And, the volume and complexity of the work, it just naturally takes a lot of time to get that work done," said J.P. Morris, Engineering Project Manager for the City of Lynchburg.
With so much construction around, Lynchburg drivers have learned to enjoy any kind of deviation from all the detours, Fort Avenue included.
"This gives additional mobility for folks who need to travel Fort Avenue to Park and onto the 5th street corridor, or from the 5th street area through Park and Fort," said Morris.
The good news is from Kemper you can either take a right onto Park or a left onto Fort. But the bad news is that construction for this project is still long from over.
"We had a wet spell of weather from the spring and summer this year that has hurt us a little bit," said Morris.
He added that crews are now back on track, but the Midtown Connector work still isn't slated to end until early 2015. Morris is telling drivers to hang in there.
"This short-term discomfort is for a greater, long-term benefit."
Right now crews are paving the portion of Park Avenue between Campbell and Kemper. Morris says they should be done with that section in about a month. Then, the entire intersection of Park, Fort and Kemper will be open.