US-95 traffic at Granite Hill to shift on Thursday

Smoky conditions above newly paved frontage road for US_95

Construction on US-95 at Granite Hill north of Athol is expected to reach a major milestone this week, with traffic expected to shift on Thursday to the newly paved east-side frontage road. The three current lanes of traffic will be maintained, but the speed limit will be reduced to 45 mph.

Work began earlier this year to expand US-95 to four lanes over the hill, build two-lane frontage roads on both sides and improve the intersection at Trails End Road.

“This shift is necessary to allow us to rebuild the primary lanes,” Project Manager Steven Bakker said. “We have also started grading the alignment of the west-side frontage road, so we have closed the south entrance to Granite Loop Road.”

Several intersections with US-95 are slated to close as part of the project, which is designed to improve safety by reducing direct access to the highway and guiding drivers via frontage roads to the best spot for traffic to turn onto the highway. These intersections include Mara Meadows, Granite Loop Road, Old House Road, Homestead Road and North Williams Lane. Trails End Road will receive new turn lanes and lighting so it can provide safer and direct access to the highway.

“Moving forward, drivers can expect to travel on the frontage road until near the end of construction,” Bakker said. “There’s more blasting in the future of this project, so we always urge drivers to pay attention to signs in the work zone and to check 511.”

This $21 million project is scheduled to be complete in fall of 2022.