Creek Turnpike construction begins Monday for expansion from Highway 75 to Memorial in south Tulsa

TULSA - Drivers in South Tulsa are bracing for a major highway expansion project.

Starting at 8 p.m. Monday, the Turnpike Authority will start putting barrels in place and moving dirt in the median in preparation for expanding the road from four lanes to six from Highway 75 to Memorial.

The Turnpike Authority says 58,000 vehicles a day travel that stretch of road.

Agency spokesperson, Jack Damrill says during rush hour, that stretch of road is too congested to be considered safe -- and as more businesses develop along that area, the congestion will only get worse. That he says, is why the work will begin immediately.

It's bad news for drivers like Bradley Griffin who use this stretch of road daily.

"It just seems like they're adding extras that shouldn't be started until the others are completed," says Griffin. "But I guess we just have to drive where we drive."

He says the construction will likely add at least 10 minutes each way to his commute. "I like my sleep and now it's going to take some of it so I can get to work on time."

The Turnpike Authority says it will try to keep both lanes open in each direction during the project, which is expected to take about a year.

But traffic will be narrowed to one lane occasionally for short periods of time.

Paul Logsden and his co-workers are in the landscaping business and they have to face the construction in order to make their living.

"I have to do a lot of re-routes," says Logsden, "We go direct - on the Broken Arrow, on all the highways. So have to just endure it."

His co-worker Angelo Lacirignola is also frustrated with all the construction he encounters daily.

"All the time, everywhere we go there's some type of construction," he says. "And it's just becoming a little aggravating."

The speed limit will drop to 55 miles per hour in the construction zone. Troopers will be posted to make sure drivers slow down.

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