DOT Announces Signing of Highway 23 Environmental Impact Statement

The Wisconsin Department of Transportation is announcing the
signing of the Highway 23 Limited Scope Supplemental Environmental Impact
Statement today – along with the Record of Decision. That will allow the
Highway 23 expansion in Fond du Lac and Sheboygan counties to
move from preliminary design to the final design and construction phases. 

Project Manager Bryan Lipke says “the statement itself shows how it affects the environment, evaluates traffic operations, safety, wetlands, all of the natural resources you would find along the corridor. And when I say it evaluates the alternatives, it looks at different options – one of them being a four-lane capacity expansion, and other alternatives are looked at as well.”

legal challenges to the decision must come within a 150-day timeframe. But Lipke 
thinks they’ve done enough to
prevent further legal delays. 

He tells us “we feel extremely confident. I mean, we’ve litigated for the last
number of years. This document has looked at every previous litigation item and
considered it. We’ve gone above and beyond in regards to the items that vacated
our previous project in 2014-2015. We feel doubly sure that we have a good,
solid document – that if they do just file a lawsuit, we would still be able to
move forward and it wouldn’t be a concern.”

project plans to reconstruct 19.1 miles of Highway 23 – turning it into a
four-lane, on-alignment divided highway – stretching from Highway 151 in Fond du Lac to County
P in Plymouth. It will also include several
intersections and an expressway designation to preserve future right of way for
other improvements.

If no further legal challenges arise to delay the project,
the DOT will begin reconstruction next summer in Sheboygan
County. Lipke says “that first project in 2019, and then as you move from the east end of the corridor to the west into Fond du Lac – construction should wrap up in 2022 in the urban area of Fond du Lac. There’s quite a few interchanges, overpasses, just a sizeable project, and it will take about three to four years to complete.”