Officials: Collaboration lowered cost of Beechurst Avenue widening

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – The Beechurst Avenue widening project will relieve West Virginia University campus congestion and will be completed at a lower cost.

The project was awarded to Bridgeport-based Bear Contracting LLC at a price of $5,478,899.91.

Ron Justice

Ron Justice, Director of Local Government Relations for WVU, said because the property owners along the project were the city of Morgantown, WVU and the DOH there no right-of-way negotiations or payments.

“We had to do some property exchanges initially and work through some agreements which we did, it was a very good relationship,” Justice said.

According to Justice, the project will completed in two phases. About one-half mile of Beechurst Avenue will be widened from University Avenue to Campus Drive and realigns the intersection of Beechurst and Campus Drive. The Realignment will require construction of a 240-foot-long retaining wall.

“There are a number of retaining walls that have to be put in place and realignment,” Justice said. “The actual construction of the lanes will occur in the following construction season.”

The realignment portion of the project is expected to relieve congestion in an area often clogged with vehicle and pedestrian traffic.

“There will be a couple turning lanes added on Campus Drive and a lane going up Campus Drive,” Justice said. ” That will traffic to flow better through that light.”

Next, Justice said WVU and the city of Morgantown will tackle the realignment of the intersection with First Street.

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