SHERIDAN — Approximately 35 Sheridan citizens came out to the Trails End Motel Wednesday to look over plans and offer input for the Interstate 90 interchange reconstruction project.
The Wyoming Department of Transportation has determined the existing interchange that connects North Main Street to I-90 needs to be restructured for safety reasons. The city of Sheridan and North Main Association have decided to use the reconstruction opportunity to make it work with an existing initiative to revitalize North Main Street and enhance businesses there.
John Heyneman of the North Main Association said public input is an instrumental part of each step in the process. While there have been several listening sessions about various topics since the projects began, Wednesday’s crowd was asked to evaluate decorative options.
“Today, we’re talking about specific design elements of the new proposed I-90 interchange itself,” Heyneman said. “What we’re looking for is what the design of the North Main interchange might include.”
Plans for the new interchange include re-routing existing portions of North Main Street, extending the city’s pathway system and creating a new city park where the current interchange sits. The renovation is being used as a platform to establish an attractive, eye-catching gateway to the Sheridan community. That said, there’s a lot of leeway in how that might come together.
Stakeholders and community members were asked for input regarding design plans for the new gateway, to include general landscaping and potential building materials.
In addition to representatives from the city government and North Main Association, two consultants from Russell+Mills Studios, based in Colorado, were standing by to document observations and provide general information about the project.
“There are a lot of individuals who care about the aesthetics of Sheridan’s entryways,” Heyneman said.
He said the input collected will be compiled with other information gathered during other phases of the redevelopment and be used to fine tune plans. Ultimately, the city of Sheridan and WYDOT will cooperate designing the final product.
WYDOT Public Information Specialist Rhonda Holwell said the department will fund the transplantation of North Main Street, renovation of the interchange and some land reclamation. WYDOT also plans to assist the city with $1.2 million for enhancements of the area, but anything beyond that amount will be the city’s responsibility, she said.
Heyneman said reconstruction of the North Main Street/I-90 interchange is estimated to begin in the fall of 2015 or spring of 2016. However, that start date is dependent on WYDOT’s receipt of funding for the project.