KANSAS CITY, Mo. — For the next 90 days, drivers in Olathe will need to detour around a project officials hope will reduce bottlenecks and the number of crashes in the area.
Tuesday morning, crews closed the 119th Street Bridge over Interstate 35.
While the closure could cause headaches for motorists, Olathe officials say the improvements will help decrease the interchange's crash rate, which is 11 times higher than the national average for similar roadways, as well as alleviate bottlenecks in the busy area.
Drivers will be able to make right turns onto and off I-35, but left turns and through traffic will be prohibited.
Officials provided detours last week.
Westbound travelers on 119th should head south on Strang Line/Mur-Len Road, west on 127th/E. Harold Street, and north on Ridgeview Road to 119th.
Eastbound drivers face a longer detour around the construction.
They should go north on Renner Boulevard, east on Kansas 10 to eastbound Interstate 435, and south on Quivira Road to 119th Street.
The new interchange will follow a diverging diamond pattern, like the one at I-35 and 95th Street.