MassDOT official continue to discuss the I-91 project

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Driving through Springfield on Interstate 91, you drive on this elevated portion of the highway with parking garages underneath the bridge.

The Massachusetts Department of Transportation has plans to upgrade this section of I-91, from the 291 ramp to State Street. A quarter of the design has been completed.

MassDOT officials were in Springfield Tuesday night to share the design progress and to receive some feedback from drivers here in western Massachusetts.

Many people told 22News their biggest concern is the possibility of dealing with two construction projects, if MGM wins the casino license.

Michael Templeton said, “I think obviously it needs to be evaluated a lot closer than normal due to the fact that the casino may be coming to town. So obviously I’m hoping that people who are in charge and making those decisions are looking into the long term plan.”

The work could begin as early as November 2014; once the bridge upgrade is done, MassDOT will then move on to their long-term project, which could ultimately bring the elevated highway down to the ground level.

Some people said no matter what happens; they just want the construction to be done in a timely manner.

“Just think that people when they bid on a job they need to guarantee it’s done by a certain time or that’s it, and they pay a penalty for every day after that,” said Sheryl Longhi, who works in Springfield.

Most contractors MassDOT hires are required to pay a fine if they miss the construction completion deadline.

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