Today, Governor Laura Kelly congratulated the Kansas Department of Transportation (KDOT) for receiving national recognition for the Turner Diagonal project in Wyandotte County. The Turner Diagonal project was recently named a Top 12 finalist in the 2021 America’s Transportation Awards (ATA) competition.
“Congratulations to everyone at KDOT for receiving this well-deserved recognition for the Turner Diagonal project,” said Governor Laura Kelly. “Since day one, my administration has used transportation dollars for what they are meant for – improving our roads, bridges, and highways to create jobs, grow our economy, and improve quality of life for all Kansans. This recognition is proof that our efforts are working.”
The $30.3 million Turner Diagonal project in Kansas City reconfigured the interchange on I-70, allowing the release of nearly 50 acres of right-of-way and opened 300 acres of land for economic development and job creation. Using alternative delivery methods, the project was completed ahead of schedule, opening in less than a year from ground-breaking.
“From the start, the Turner Diagonal project embodied so much of our new IKE transportation program, building on the foundational elements of partnerships, options and problem solving,” said Kansas Department of Transportation Secretary Julie Lorenz. “With this project, we have delivered with public sector principles and private sector urgency.”
The Turner Diagonal project made use of public funds from the Unified Government of Wyandotte County, KDOT and a USDOT Build grant, as well as private-sector support. The Kansas Turnpike Authority donated right of way. Completing the project 20 months faster than traditional delivery months helped create 2,000 new jobs at Turner Logistics Park. Truck staging areas improved truck travel times in the area. Pedestrian paths and sidewalks provided a more sustainable, usable community asset.
The finalists – whittled down from 80 nominees from 35 state DOTs – now compete for the ATA Grand Prize and for the People’s Choice Award. Both prizes come with a $10,000 cash award, for a charity or transportation-related scholarship of the winners’ choosing.
The ATA People’s Choice award winner is selected through online voting. KDOT and Governor Kelly are encouraging Kansans to show their support by voting once a day for the Turner Diagonal project here. Voting is underway and continues until Oct. 25. Transportation industry experts will select the Grand Prize winner.
The national ATA winners will be announced at the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) annual meeting at the end of October.