SUBJECT: Governor Douglas: Western Leg of Bypass Will Open Tuesday...Ahead of Schedule -- Announces Official Ribbon Cutting and Dedication Ceremony
Bennington, Vt. –Governor Jim Douglas today said the western segment of the Bennington Bypass, Vermont Route 279, will open to traffic at 10:00 a.m. Tuesday, October 12, 2004.
“Completing the Bennington Bypass is one of my top transportation priorities,” Governor Douglas said. “That is why in March of last year we committed more expertise to this important project, and our efforts have paid off. The opening of this highway represents the first step in fulfilling a long standing commitment to the residents and businesses of Bennington County,” Governor Douglas said. “I am looking forward to the celebration and dedication on October 18th.”
Governor Douglas will host an official ribbon cutting and dedication ceremony on Monday, October 18th at 2:00 p.m. at the vehicle weigh station on the newly opened section of the highway; the public is invited to attend. The Governor said he will formally dedicate the new highway to “an important group of Vermonters” at that event.
The $56 million highway begins 1.5 miles west of the Vermont/New York border and connects with New York Route 7. It continues northeast through an interchange with Vermont Route 67A and terminates at the interchange with US Route 7 just north of downtown Bennington.
The western segment is the first of three planned. The second, or northern, segment is under design with construction projected to begin in 2006 or 2007. The final southern segment is in the planning stage with a construction date still to be determined.
In its entirety, the project is comprised of two bypasses, one to alleviate the east-west traffic currently required to pass through downtown Bennington on Vermont Route 9 and a north-south bypass, which will accommodate U.S. Route 7 traffic. Both U.S. Route 7 and Vermont Route 9 area designated as part of the national Highway System and are part of the Vermont Truck network.