Lincoln Way Widening - 1963

Ames Daily Tribune, May 24, 1963

Dust will begin rising over Lincoln Way Monday, as construction crews get onto the job of widening the street to four lanes between Sheldon Ave. and Beach Ave.  Removal of some trees began this afternoon, but preparation for heavy construction work will begin Monday, according to Robins Jackson of Jackson Construction Co., Nevada, which holds the contract for the $827,000 project together with the E.A. Kramme Co., Des Moines.

Contractors and sub contractors' representatives, highway commission officials and representatives of the utility companies, the City of Ames and Iowa State University met this morning to attempt to iron out construction problems.  Jackson said the work probably would not reach full swing until about July 1.

Graeme George, Highway Commission resident engineer, noted that the project is unusual in that the contractor was urged to work long hours and double shifts to meet the early completion date.  The contract calls for completion by Oct. 1, with two lanes open to traffic by Sept. 7.

Among the problems discussed this morning was that of maintaining utility service during construction work.  Water, gas and telephone lines all extend under the paving in various locations.  Water service will be bridged around construction work at different times in order to allow water to be supplied to fourth ward users.  Gas service mains will be moved in some locations, and new services extended to users.  No interruption in these, or to telephone subscribers is anticipated.

Jackson said all efforts would be made to provide for traffic during the work.  Through traffic is to be detoured around the construction site beginning Monday and detour signs were being erected today.  Motorists were cautioned to watch for new stop signs and new no parking signs erected along the detour route.  Four streets will be closed off at Lincoln Way during construction.  These are Knoll Road and Ash, Stanton and Hayward Aves.  Beach and Sheldon Aves. will remain open

Jackson said construction probably would begin at Hayward Ave., where two eight-foot culverts are to be installed and work east.  The twin culverts seemed today to pose the biggest single problem in the construction project, mostly because of the unusual size.  They will run [College Creek] from the present storm sewer intake on the west side of Hayward Ave. north to Lincoln Way, then east and empty into the present flume north of Lincoln Way on the campuse.  The two pipes will be some 20 feet underground.

Meanwhile, campustown merchants, contemplating a summer-long interruption of business, made plans to serve their customers as best they can.

The College Savings Bank apparently has the most elaborate plan for serving customers during the construction.  It has now in operation, a temporary drive-up banking facility at the Skelly service station at Welch Ave. and Chamberlain St.

D.A.Knudson, president of the bank, said customers would be encouraged to use bank by mail service and to use the municipal parking lot on Welch Ave.  "We've survived depression, floods and remodeling and will survive this." Knudson said, "We'll give the best darned banking service available."

Conrad Stephenson pointed out that the sidewalks in the business district would not be touched, for the most part.  Walking customers still will have easy access to all stores in Campustown, he said, adding that two municipal parking lots, one off Welch Ave., one off Stanton Ave., are available.  "And we'll have better parking all over after the work is completed," he added.

Ted Landsberg of Landsberg Pharmacy said delivery service would be offered for prescription customers, and some sort of pickup station would be provided if necessary.  "Other than that," he added, "we'll invite everyone out to watch the construction."

Those merchants adopting a "wait and see" attitude include Weaver Jewelry, Student Supply Store, Borron's Barber Shop, Swank's Jewelry, Bobby Rogers, Town and Campus, College Pipe Shop and Anderson Beauty Salon.  Bates Jewelers and the Ben Franklin Store said they would maintain the usual summer hours for the time being.

Ray Truesdale said there would be no change in policy for the two theaters operating in Campustown, the Varsity Theater would operate weekends as in the past and Nw Ames would be open daily.  Normal operation also will be continued at Hill's Studio, according to Hugh Hossle.  "We feel the continued use of the sidewalk will be useful," he said, adding, "most potential customers know about the parking off Welch Ave."

View the proposed plans of the widening project.