Final stage of Business 51 $15 million dollar construction project underway

Published: Aug. 24, 2021 at 11:07 PM CDT
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PLOVER, Wis. (WSAW) - The fourth and final part of a nearly seven-year construction project has begun on Business 51 in Plover. Construction crews are working around the clock to get the now-closed road open again.

“We’re hoping to basically get the road back open before school opens, that’s the primary goal,” said Dan Mahoney, Village of Plover Administrator.

Stage four of the project involved widening the roads on top of the dam to make it safer. Lanes will be 12 feet wide with sidewalks when the project is complete.

“I know people who are literally afraid, especially at the speed limits, to drive that road. And now with the center median, it will separate the two lanes of traffic,” said Mahoney.

The roadway has a higher than average crash rate. The Wisconsin Department of Transportation suspected it would get worse in upcoming years if they didn’t start the project. There’s still a lot to get done, but bad weather has caused delays.

That’s not the only issue. The west wall of the dam is considered historical. It was built in 1906 and construction workers have to be extremely careful not to damage it in the process.

The DOT, DNR, and Village of Plover are all working closely on the project. Mahoney said it’s a very complex process that involves widening lanes, putting pipes underground, adding sidewalks and more.

“Probably when we’re all said and done the total cost of the project will be over $15 million,” said Mahoney.

The dam is expected to be done in early November, just a few days after it was originally scheduled. The final portion of the full project is expected to be completed in 2022.

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