Governor Matt Mead is proposing adding passing lanes to some of the state’s highways including Highway 59 between Douglas and Gillette. Mead’s budget proposal would use 21 million dollars in state funds for the upgrades.
Jim Willox is the Chairman of the Converse County Commissioners and says the proposed lanes would ease the surge in energy traffic on the 170 mile highway.
"Well what you have on Highway 59 is a lot of mixed type of travel," says Willox. "You’ve got semis, you’ve got rig moves, you’ve got passenger vehicles, you’ve got busses. So you just got a lot of mixed use that travels at different speeds and what the passing lanes do is provide an opportunity for those vehicles going a little bit faster to get around those that are traveling below the speed limit."
Willox says if the legislature were to pass the governor’s recommendation, construction on the improvements could start in summer of 2015.