WYDOT: "Short Delays and On Your Way" in NW Wyoming

WYDOT: “Short Delays and On Your Way” in NW Wyoming This Summer

Written by on March 20, 2023

There will always be road and highway construction in northwest Wyoming, but since W.Y.D.O.T. has finished major projects in the region, all the work this summer will be smaller in scale with shorter delays and quick completion.

W.Y.D.O.T. Public Relations Specialist Cody Beers was the featured speaker at the Cody Club lunch on Monday, March 20. The topic of his presentation was the road projects the department intends to finish in the Summer of 2023.

Overall, there isn’t much – or at least much that will significantly impact drivers. Major projects like the Beartooth Highway (212) reconstruction are complete. Others, like the Two Dot Slide & U.S. Highway 14/16/20 pavement overlay near the East Entrance of Yellowstone National Park, need only a little more time to reach completion.

Beers presented a full of list of W.Y.D.O.T.’s projects for 2023 – including how long each will delay drivers and when they should be finished.

Two Dot Slide Project on the Chief Joseph Highway (WYO 296)

W.Y.D.O.T. has been working on this project since June 2020. Grouted hollow bar anchors and a concrete gravity retaining wall were inserted into a section of the canyon wall for permanent support in an area around Dead Indian Pass.

All major work on this project has been completed. The final step is reclamation of the area, which will be completed by June 30 at the latest.

There will be minor delays during working hours.

Chief Joseph Highway Slide Repair

W.Y.D.O.T. will construct a toe berm off the edge of the highway near Milepost 18.7 while removing four inches of existing roadway and replacing it with backfill and reinforcing geotextile. During the project, drivers can expect a one-lane road with flaggers and traffic signals.

Delays will be up to 20 minutes during working hours and two minutes during non-working hours.

All work will be finished in October 2023.

U.S. Highway 14/16/20 in Buffalo Bill State Park

Construction has already started on this project, situated between the Eagle Point Day Use area to the North Fork Campground. Flaggers and traffic signals are controlling traffic six days a week between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m., with Sundays off.

The highway repairs will be finished in July 2023.

Yellowstone – Cody on U.S. Highway 14/16/20

This $5.4 million project consisted of rotomilling the existing pavement surface, a two-inch pavement overlay, chip sealing, minor slope flattening, guardrail repair, and other work on this section of highway near the East Entrance of Yellowstone National Park.

The pavement overlay must be finished, which means delays of up to 20 minutes and a pilot vehicle during working hours. The overlay – along with minor cleaning, paving, and chip sealing – will also be finished by June 30.

Cody Tunnel Lighting

W.Y.D.O.T. intends to replace all the lighting in the longest tunnel near the Buffalo Bill Reservoir. The new L.E.D. lights will be easier to maintain and easier on the eyes, which means safer driving conditions.

Fortunately, the contract calls for all work to be done at night so there will be no traffic delays during the day. Twenty-minute delays and a pilot car will be utilized between 7 p.m. and 7 a.m. six days a week. The work will be finished by October 31.

More information on the logistics of this project will be released closer to the date when the work begins.

WYDOT road work in Buffalo Bill State Park

Courtesy Buffalo Bill State Park

Beers favors removing completion dates from these projects because the few contractors working in northwest Wyoming are already stretched thin.

The Mountain Construction Company is the primary contractor for many of these projects – and one of the few contractors in the region. While their crews work as fast as possible, there will be inevitable delays as contractors and manpower are in short supply.

Furthermore, Beers anticipates changes to the federal Commercial Driver’s License will impact Wyoming sooner than later. The certification now requires a class to qualify, costing between $5,000 and $10,000.

Beers also gave a glimpse at projects W.Y.D.O.T. is planning for 2024 and beyond.

  • Cody – Greybull on U.S. Highway 14/16/20
    • A section of the highway from the Park County Line to the Oregon Basin Road will get an overlay, chip sealing, and slope flattening along with some final work on the Dry Creek Bridge.
  • Emergency Repair Projects near Cody Tunnel
    • The Buffalo Bill Reservoir is eroding into a section of U.S. Highway 14/16/20 on the western side of the Cody Tunnel. W.Y.D.O.T. will install machine-placed riprap (rocks) and gabion baskets (wire baskets filled with rock) to repair slope erosion.


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