I-91 projects will affect Hampshire County drivers until 2018

Construction on I-91 south began in May, focusing on road repairs in Hatfield and Whately.

HATFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – For the next year, Hampshire county drivers will need to practice patience on the roads. MassDOT has 2 major projects going on right now. One will be finished this fall; the other, not until fall 2018.

22News was there when MassDOT crews were working on the second project Monday afternoon. This is the longer project of the two, costing nearly $11 million. It focuses on resurfacing 11 miles of the southbound highway between Deerfield and Northampton.

“I do think it’s good they’re finally addressing it to get rid of stuff,” says David Jagodzinksi of Hatfield, “smooth out I-91 and make it a little safer for travel as far as potholes and everything go.”

Monday, crews shut down Exit 21 southbound in Hatfield to mill the road. Drivers were forced into the left lane to go around milling near the exit. 22News drove through the construction at around noon, and didn’t run into any traffic. On Route 5, 22News saw signs warning drivers to avoid the area, allowing them to plan their routes a little better.

Victoria Woodburn does what she can to avoid waiting in traffic, telling 22News, “It’s frustrating, I’ve been paying attention to my text alerts from 22News so I can be a little more prepared.”

Drivers can expect more temporary lane and exit closures this summer while MassDOT works on this project. As for the other major highway project – that’ll be done this fall. It also focuses on resurfacing both sides of the highway, between Easthampton and Northampton.