MADISON, Wisconsin (WKOW) -- Construction begins Monday on a stretch of Verona Road from the Beltline south to Raymond Road.
The construction, expected to last until November, will reduce traffic on Verona Road to two lanes in each direction beginning March 10. Delays are expected.
The Wisconsin DOT says the project is necessary, according to its website, because Verona Road is prone to traffic jams. The DOT also says there are a high number of car accidents recorded each year on Verona Road.
The construction on the stretch between Raymond Road and the Beltline is just one part of an overall, larger project expected to last roughly five years.
Stage one, expected to last through 2016, calls for improvements to the aforementioned section of Verona Road and on the Beltline. Stage two, expected to be finished in 2019, reconstructs Verona Road from Raymond Road south to County Road PD.
"It will be a big inconvenience," says Marquese Ford, who lives near the intersection of Raymond Road and Verona Road. He says he drives the road each day to get to work at Home Depot located a few blocks away.
The Dane County Sheriff's department is urging people to find alternate routes through the area during the construction. Lt. Kurt Pierce says those who have to drive through the construction zone should drive cautiously and slowly. He says drivers should leave ample space between their vehicle and the one in front of them.
It's also important to beware of any suddenly-stopping construction equipment, Pierce says.
*The DOT lists a couple of safety tips to keep in mind under the 'frequently asked questions' section of the project website.
"It will be slower," says Jason Artemis of the construction zone traffic.
Artemis is a shift leader at Einstein Bros. Bagels, located just off Verona Road near the center of the construction project.
He says he's not worried about losing customers because of the traffic delays.
"Our regulars... are already saying they will continue coming," Artemis says. "We definitely appreciate knowing they're satisfied enough to continue coming here even if it's a bit of an extra hassle."
He adds the finished project, which is expected to be a safer Verona Road, is worth the occasional headache.
"I think it's going to be beneficial," Artemis says.
*For a timeline and other information on the project, click here.
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