A number of residents want to see the Highway 38 project go through as proposed by the Wisconsin Department of Transportation while others want Highway H to be the new route.
The residents spoke at a Village Board meeting held Tuesday during a public comment period. The includes spending $125 million to reroute Highway 38 by building a new Highway 38 that would cut through farm fields and a proposed expansion of the Franksville Industrial Park.
The had voiced opposition last month to the southern portion of a new route for Highway 38 because the Industrial Park would essentially lose 80 acres if the road goes through it. But neighbors living along Highway 38 and the arterial roads that feed into Highway 38 say they want the project to go through because they believe road is unsafe.
Ron Coutts, the Village President, said he received about 20 letters from residents about Highway 38. Of those letters, 16 supported the DOT’s current proposed project and the rest opposed the project.
Christopher Ruud, 6800 Hoods Creek Rd., said he was among those wants the project to stay as is for safety reasons.
“I was in favor of a safer passageway from Highway K to Six Mile. My family travels it a lot. We see a lot of accidents on Highway 38 at the intersections of Four Mile and Three Mile,” Ruud said.
Wolf Korndoerfer, 3315 Patzke Lane, agreed with Ruud.
“It’s a real safety issue because of the hills and the curves, and I don’t see how expanding its current location could make it less safe,” Korndoerfer said. “It’s a concern because routing it out by the industrial park would be good for economic development. We’re just opposed to the expansion of it in the current right of way.”
Some neighbors said they would prefer an alternative route than rerouting it through the industrial park.
Kurt Wentorf, 3831 Five Mile Road, said he too sees a lot of car crashes on Highway 38 and Five Mile Road. But he’d like the route down Highway H into Franksville.
“And I’m sure that would also help Franksville Develop,” he said.
Fran Martin, 5630 5 Mile Rd., said she wanted to remind the Village Board of a couple of issues: that if Highway 38 is done south of Six Mile Road, then the existing 38 road becomes a village road and that expense is then added to our tax base as a village, and the original assumptions about traffic flow that were made are not accurate.
“There was a much higher traffic flow from the roundabout to Six Mile Road because of the subdivisions that were predicted to happen, but that did not happen. So the reason, or at least part of the reason, to do this project no longer exists,” Martin said.
However, Martin agreed with Wentorf’s suggestion of an alternative route that what the DOT has proposed because “the proposed route seems to make so little sense,” she said.
“If you kept going straight, then that would be H and I think that would help with the economic development of Franksville as well,” Martin said.
Coutts added that Highway 38 is a state highway project and encouraged all concerned citizens to contact the DOT or their state Legislators.
Jerry Griswold, Village Board member and chairman of the Public Works Committee, said the Committee would continue talking about alignment of Highway 38. Coutts said the DOT wouldn’t be making any decisions on the project until mid-September.
“I also have my ideas and Mike Hayek’s got our own ideas,” he said. “I really don’t want to wait for the state to come up with ideas, I’d like to propose some ideas to them and see what they say,” Griswold said.