Redesign For I-84 Through Hartford Planned

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Major changes planned, and are certainly needed, for the busiest stretch of highway in Connecticut.

The two-and-a-half mile section of I-84, from Flatbush Avenue to the I-91 interchange, is for the most part a raised roadway. The viaduct, however, has just about reached the life it was designed for, and traffic going east and west is now more than three times its original designed capacity.

There are four options currently being looked at to rehab, rebuild or replace the viaduct.

The cheapest option, which would cost about $1 to $2 billion, would be a complete rehab of the current structure.  The most expensive option would cost around $10 billion to go underground with a tunnel.

There is also talk about bringing the roadway down to ground level.

"Think about how the eastbound and westbound in certain parts of the city are separated by large distances of land," Thomas Deller, the director of Hartford's Department Of Development Services, said.  "You could put them into one corridor, so there is land available to make this all happen."

Road engineers say any major changes to the highway through downtown probably won't be seen for another 10 years or so.

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