Wyoming lawmakers will discuss how the state should maintain
Interstate 80 during the regular session that starts next week.
The Joint Transportation, Highways and Military Affairs
Interim Committee offered a bill for the session beginning Jan. 9 that would
establish a select panel to study how to maintain Wyoming's 400 miles of the
The panel of highway professionals, lawmakers and state
highway commissions would have six to eight months and $100,000 to come up with
The decision by lawmakers to introduce the bill followed
talks with the Wyoming Department of Transportation that the state needs to
develop a long-term maintenance plan for I-80 that is separate from plans for
other roads and highways, the Casper
Plans for long-term maintenance for the highway could
include upgrading the asphalt to a sturdier concrete, adding a third lane in
each direction, building alternate routes, or diverting truck traffic to rail.
Tolling also was mentioned for further study.
The amount of truck traffic along the only direct highway
route through the upper Midwest is among the concerns lawmakers have about how
to maintain I-80.
The daily traffic count from Laramie to Cheyenne tops
12,800, the Star-Tribune reported.
That amount is expected to increase by more than 35 percent during the next 20
Large trucks account for half of I-80 traffic and is
expected to grow to 60 percent in the next two decades.
The bill - HB24 - will start in the House Transportation,
Highways and Military Affairs Committee for consideration.