Hwy 70 Expansion Delayed

7-12-05 - The Highway 70 expansion project from the Madill city limits to the Texoma State Lodge has been in the works for years. But it may be years down the road before it continues.

Madill residents have argued about this issue for years. Some want the expansion go through town, while others want a bypass.

Now O-DOT says the town's indecisiveness will likely keep Highway 70 two lanes for another decade.

Try to get through Madill any afternoon and you won't get far. That's why the expansion project was on the top of O-DOT's priority list. But when Madill didn't come up with a decision on where to expand the highway a year and half ago, they stopped the environmental testing for construction. And now the project isn't on O-DOT's highway-70 eight-year plan. They will now stop the expansion in Oakland.

And Eppler says this hold-up by O-DOT is a wake up call. They need to make a decision to get the ball rolling so these folks can keep rolling. But that could be easier said then done since folks around town are still split on the issue.

Since the project is on hold, Eppler plans to reintroduce creating a left turn lane through town at tonight's meeting. But O-DOT says right now the traffic is so bad the only thing that will alleviate it is the expansion.

O-DOT says if Madill were to decide on the issue tomorrow, they could get on the eight-year plan next year. But it would still be another five years before they'd start construction.