Traffic alert: I-235 to close for construction project

Interstate traffic I-235 in Oklahoma City

Interstate traffic and construction on I-235 in Oklahoma City, facing south, is seen on May 2, 2017. (KFOR/Bill Miston)

OKLAHOMA CITY – Drivers are being warned about a major construction project that is expected to impact one of Oklahoma’s busiest interstates this weekend.

Originally, Oklahoma  Department of Transportation crews planned to close I-235 in both directions from north of N.W. 36th St. through the I-44 interchange earlier this month.

However, ODOT officials say the construction had to be delayed due to weather conditions.

Now, officials say the project is on track and will begin on Friday, Jan. 26 at 7 p.m.

Officials tell KFOR that they will try and work around any weather conditions to keep the project moving forward.

Beginning on Friday, ODOT construction crews will use cranes to move two massive new railroad bridges into place over the interstate.

“This is one of the real critical points of the project to get these railroads bridges in place so we can realign the railroad and take down the old railroad,” ODOT Director Mike Patterson said. “This is adding a Monday to our Saturday and Sunday closures.”

Click here to watch the construction.

Officials say the nearly 100,000 commuters who use I-235 will need to add some extra time to their drive.

Alternate routes, such as I-44, Lake Hefner Parkway, I-35, and Lincoln, are highlighted in blue on the map , provided by ODOT.

I-235 alternate routes, Courtesy ODOT

The $88 million “Off Broadway” project is the largest and longest contract ever awarded by ODOT.

It will widen I-235 to six lanes, alleviating some safety hazards by fixing flood prone areas and straightening bends in the interstate near N.W. 50th St.

The project is expected to be complete by the end of the year.