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“I thought it was a tornado,” Construction along I-235 startles local residents

OKLAHOMA CITY – Construction on I-235 is causing area residents to complain about the noise.

"It woke me up, scared me to death. I thought it was a tornado or somebody was breaking into my house,” said Pam Tomberlin, who lives near 50th and Hudson.

Construction crews are working hard, tearing away the 50th Street bridge. It’s part of an $88 million project, which includes widening I-235 between 36th and I-44.

"This is one of the most complicated, longest phases of a multi-phase project on the Broadway Extension and I-44 interchange,” said Terri Angier with the Oklahoma Department of Transportation.

ODOT officials said reconstruction will help accommodate the 95,000 drivers who use the section every day.

While area residents are looking forward to that, they said it’s getting a bit noisy.

"We live near Bishop McGuiness and, when they started construction on Friday, it was really loud and we could hear it all the way over there,” said Beth Ah Lo .

Beth and Kawika Ah Lo walk their dog in the area near the 50th Street bridge often.

"It sounded like a jack hammer just going completely through the night. I would say we heard it until we fell asleep eventually. It kept us up a little bit, but it's just part of the process, and we realize that,” Kawika said.

That’s a feeling many who live around the area share.

"I've gotten used to it, and it's a little aggravating. But, it's progress. We're coming along and getting it done, and it's going to be beautiful to have all of those lanes open,” Tomberlin said.

ODOT officials remind you to plan an alternate route, such as I-35 and Hefner Parkway.