WICHITA, Kansas – It’s considered one of Wichita’s busiest intersections. Roughly 50,000 to 60,000 cars travel through it a day. Construction on the Kellogg interchange with Webb Road was supposed to begin this spring, but spring has come and gone and those plans to expand have now been pushed back. According to the city, the project went $20-25 million over budget.
Shawn Mellies, the Chief Design Engineer with the city, says the Kansas Turnpike Authority has stepped in to help find a way to cut cost.
“We started looking at different things we could do to reduce some of the cost,” said Mellies. “They hired a local consultant to do a study to look at both the different connections and if there’s anything they can do differently.”
While in limbo, this major overhaul has also generated a dispute over property values for a few businesses.
Businesses declined to comment because they are in the middle of litigation with the city. However, they did say if and when construction starts they have concerns about how traffic would affect the flow of their business.
The city also declined to comment due to the litigation, however did confirm that they are currently appealing past appraisals. Claiming they came in considerably higher than the city originally offered.
Officials say that the appraisal lawsuit won’t affect the Kellogg interchange project, but right now it’s all on hold.
“Once this study is done I don’t see it taking a whole lot of time,” said Mellies.
Still there’s no guarantee when that study will be done. Meaning until then, Wichita’s busiest intersection will stay that way.