Whitesburg KY

Ahead of schedule

Kentucky Transportation Cabinet officials say construction of the valley floor section on US 119 is ahead of schedule.

Sara George, spokesperson with the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet’s Pikeville office, said the contractor of the project, Kay & Kay Contracting of London, has put in about 204 days on this project as of Aug. 20 and has about 240 days left in the 444-day contract to finish the project. Construction should be finished by September 2012.

“If it looks like they are not working sometimes it is because they have plenty of days to finish it,” said George.

Construction of the project started on March 17, 2009.

George said the construction season is from May through October, not counting weekends and holidays, is about 126 days a year.

“If a contractor chooses to work only on normal workdays (Monday through Friday), does not work on holidays, and does not work from November through April, a 444-day contract would take about 3.5 years to complete,” said George.

“The fact is, the contractor is ahead of schedule so if the company has other jobs, they have the option of sending their crews to other locations.”

From the end of the spot improvements of Pine Mountain to the Harlan County line will eventually all be four lanes of traffic. George said the valley floor section is a part of a wider area in 13 Appalachian states to be chosen in the 1960s by the Appalachian Regional Commission for highway upgrades so rural residents could have easier access to education facilities and healthcare services.

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