The Edmond Sun

November 8, 2013

Bumpy days on Danforth about to end

Heather Dillingham
Special to The Sun

OKLA. CITY — After months of complaints from the City of Edmond and the Oklahoma Corporation Commission, Danforth Road, between Thomas Drive and Broadway, will shut down for railroad crossing repairs starting the week of Nov. 11, said Joe Faust, director of Public Affairs at Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway.

The crossing is currently made out of asphalt, a non-permanent repair after the original concrete panels were taken out more than two years ago because they had shifted and were hitting the tracks, said the City of Edmond’s Director of Engineering Steve Manek.

Talitha Kathol, an organizational communications major at the University of Central Oklahoma and one of UCO’s more than 15,000 commuters, said, “personally, along with all the other cars, we are coming to almost a complete and total stop” in order to cross safely. She the crossing has been causing traffic jams for weeks.

Faust said that scheduling repairs has been complicated because it meant closing a road. They fast-tracked the repair work in Edmond because of the high amount of complaints, he said.

Manek said the city has been pleading with the railway to fix the area due to “tons” of complaints they received every day.

He said the BNSF has jurisdiction over crossings because they owned the land before the city was established. They have their own maintenance crew that must come out to fix any issues, Manek said.

The repairs are estimated to be complete by the end of the day Nov. 12. Traffic will be unable to pass in both directions and motorists are encouraged to determine an alternate route, according to the city.

The roadwork will inconvenience commuters, he said, but the area will hopefully be smoother when it is completed.