Starke Co. Hwy Dept: Range Road upgrade to begin Monday

KNOX—Work on Starke County’s newest truck route will begin Monday, July 28. Since this is a heavily-traveled route, the Starke County Highway Department reports that while the work is being conducted, traffic will still be able to utilize the roadway. 

Earlier this year, the Starke County Highway Department received a grant from the Indiana Department of Transportation to upgrade Range Road to hot mix asphalt between SR 10 and the Toto Road.

The three-mile route is a key commerce corridor for rural Starke County, as it connects Bailey’s Discount Center and Toto. South Bend-based Rieth-Riley Construction will do the project, which is expected to take a couple of weeks. They will begin preparations Monday and start the actual paving on Tuesday.

“The upgrade of Range Road to hot mix is one of the key components of our 10-year truck route plan,” Starke County Highway Superintendent Rik Ritzler said. “Thanks to the Community Crossings program and support from the commissioners, we are able to leverage state funds to make strategic road improvements throughout the county.”

The $503,225 Community Crossings Matching Grant requires a 25-percent local match, which the commissioners have agreed to fund. In order to qualify, counties must also submit an INDOT-approved asset management plan for maintaining roads and bridges. 

The Starke County Highway Department has received Community Crossings Matching Grants each of the past three years. 

Previous projects include the upgrade of CR 50 S to hot mix asphalt between SR 39 and the Knox city limits, CR 25 N to hot mix asphalt between 600 E and State Road 23, the intersection improvement at CR 210 and 600 S/Old State Road 10 at Bass Lake, the replacement of Bridge 50 on CR 1150 E south of State Road 10 and Bridge 47 on CR 625 S west of CR 875 E and the improvement of CR 300 E/ Klockner Drive between the Knox Industrial Park and SR 8. Additional Community Crossings funds will be used to upgrade CR 250 N between Range Road and U.S. 35 to hot mix asphalt later this year. 

The Starke County Highway Department maintains 1,400 lane miles of roads and 57 bridges.