Ozone alert issued for Tuesday

The Mid-America Regional Council Air Quality Program has issued an orange Ozone Alert for Tuesday, Aug. 26.

This alert indicates that an unhealthy level of ground-level ozone, also known as smog, is expected Tuesday in the Kansas City region.

Vehicle emissions are a major contributor to regional ozone pollution, a MARC spokesman said. Residents can help reduce pollution by carpooling or using public transportation, according to MARC.

The Kansas City Area Transportation Authority’s Regional Call Center offers assistance in planning trips by bus. Contact the call center at 816-221-0660 weekdays from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. The center provides route information for The Metro, The JO and Unified Government Transit. A trip planner is also available online at www.kcata.org. Most fares on regional buses are reduced to 75 cents on Ozone Alert days.

“Taking fewer trips in your car and choosing alternative forms of transportation, especially on Ozone Alert days, can help everyone breathe easier during the summer months,” said Amanda Graor, MARC air quality program manager. “Even small actions can make a difference.”

MARC issues the SkyCast, the region’s daily ozone season air quality forecast, on its website, www.marc.org, and on Twitter, www.twitter.com/airQKC. SkyCast information is also available via the air quality Facebook page, www.facebook.com/airQKC, and the information line at 913-383-7557.

Some Wyandotte County highway projects among those planned by KDOT

Hundreds of projects that will improve Kansas roads and bridges, as well as create short- and long-term jobs, have been scheduled by the Kansas Department of Transportation for the next two years.

The projects will preserve, modernize and expand roads on both state and local road systems. The work list includes 464 highway projects, 194 bridge-interchange projects and 1,603 miles of improvements.

“This continues the steady flow of work – and the construction jobs created by that work – under the 10-year T-Works transportation program passed during the 2010 legislative session,” said Transportation Secretary Mike King.

The estimated cost of the work, for which construction will be underway during the 2015 and 2016 fiscal years, is $1.2 billion. About 65 percent of the projects are considered preservation work, which will protect the investment Kansans have already made in the state’s public road system.

“The construction work will create jobs for hundreds of workers, who will spend their paychecks in communities all over the state, spreading the benefits far beyond the construction industry,” King said.

“But the better news is the long-term job prospects these improvements will help make possible.”

On the project list for fiscal year 2015 for Wyandotte County:

– U.S. 69 over the Missouri River, bridge replacement, $36,748,500.

– U.S. 69 east junction of I-35 and U.S. 69 north to the west junction of I-70 and U.S. 69, light preservation, $543,000.

– I-35, two bridges on I-35 in Kansas City, Kan., bridge repair, $813,510.

– I-635, two bridges on I-635 near the I-635 and I-70 junction, bridge repair, $243,000.

– I-70, five bridges on I-70 and I-670 in Kansas City, Kan., bridge repair, $281,000.

– I-70, two bridges on I-70 (I-70 over old K-32 and Kaw Drive), just east of the I-70 and I-635 junction, bridge repairs, $8,534,000.

– I-70, from the I-70 and K-7 interchange east to the I-70 and 110th Street interchange, expansion project, $29,590,000.

– U.S. 69, from Tauromee Avenue to Washington Boulevard, local construction project, $405,994.

– Pedestrian bike path near the Kansas and Missouri rivers in Kansas City, Kan., local construction project, $1,600,000.

– Missouri River – Jersey Creek connector, Kansas City, Kan., local construction project, $747,270.

– I-35 in the Kansas City metro area, expansion project, $272,000.