ANGORA, Neb. — Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts, the Nebraska Department of Transportation (NDOT) and other state and local dignitaries gathered on Oct. 17 to celebrate progress on construction of the state’s Heartland Expressway.
The ceremony marked the completion of 14 miles to connect the four-lane, divided expressway from Nebraska Highway Link 62A (east of Minatare) to Alliance, a news release stated.
Funds from the Build Nebraska Act and the Transportation Innovation Act have enabled NDOT to move forward on the corridor.
Additionally, the agency won an $18.3 million grant in the summer of 2018 through the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Infrastructure for Rebuilding America (INFRA) program to complete the 14-mile stretch south of Alliance.
“The Heartland Expressway will be a vital north-south corridor within our national transportation network,” Ricketts said. “Its construction will significantly increase the flow of freight from America’s border with Canada all the way to ports along the Gulf of Mexico. The completion of the Heartland Expressway will create great opportunities for economic growth in the Nebraska Panhandle as businesses make use of this strategic transportation route. Congratulations to NDOT, IHC-Scott, and local and regional supporters on the opening of this major segment of the expressway.”
The Heartland Expressway is a federally designated, high-priority corridor. When completed, the Heartland Expressway will provide multilane, divided highway access between Rapid City, South Dakota, and Denver via Alliance, Scottsbluff and Brush, Colorado.
IHC-Scott, Inc. of Centennial, Colorado, was awarded the $32 million contract to complete the 14-mile segment of the Heartland Expressway from the L-62A / U.S.-385 junction north toward Alliance. Work began in the spring of 2021 and included grading, safety improvements and expansion of the roadway.
“The work completed here is only the next phase in a longer, multi-year project,” NDOT Director John Selmer said. “We are here to celebrate progress on a system that will improve mobility in the region and enhance safety. We look forward to being out here again, celebrating the next segment completion.”
Alliance Mayor Mike Dafney said the expressway “has been long awaited by the Panhandle and the citizens who call it home. Our communities and our organizations are committed to this project and its ability to meet transportation needs for Nebraskans in the region for years to come.”
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