Champlain Parkway sees some movement, gets an update

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BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) A plan to connect Interstate 189 and downtown Burlington may be coming to fruition this fall after 60 years.

The Champlain Parkway, previously called the Southern Connector, will be a two-lane road that runs from Queen City Park Road to Main Street. The goal is to ease traffic, decrease truck traffic on residential roads and increase pedestrian safety.

The city first started talking about the Champlain Parkway in the 1960s and the first part was built in the 1980s. Since then, the project has stumbled across several legal hurdles and was determined a Superfund site.

Now, the city is hoping to move construction forward and start building by September.

At Monday’s Board of Finance meeting, they discussed proposing an amendment that would help them secure more money to cover the total construction cost of $2.5 million. It would permit them to hire construction workers as well.

Board members also talked about hiring crews to analyze the soil and isolate any contaminated areas to keep construction workers and the public safe both during and after the parkway is complete.

The Board of Finance Committee plans to present their amendment proposal to the City Council at their meeting on June 3. They are also expected to discuss the final budget and construction bids.