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Underpass construction in Billings expected to last through summer

Underpass construction.PNG
Posted at 10:50 PM, Apr 18, 2023

BILLINGS — Springtime in Montana also means construction time and near Sixth Street West and Underpass Avenue, there’s some major work being done, with a timeline that stretches out potentially into the fall.

"The Underpass Avenue project is a road reconstruction project so, we’re working on 6th Avenue under the underpass and we’re also reconstructing both intersections on the north and south side of the underpass," said Lisa Olmsted, public involvement manager for DOWL, on Tuesday.

There’s currently road closures south of the underpass by Moose Lodge and the Reno Club.

Olmsted said there are plans for new turn signals, pedestrian crossing and turning lanes as well as one improvement that she says most of Billings will be thrilled to see.

April 2023 Underpass Ave Map.png

"Any Billings local knows the history that the Sixth Avenue underpass has with flooding during any large rainstorm. So part of this project is to tear out the road and improve the stormwater facilities that are under the road," added Olmsted.

And part of that also includes work being done to the water main and that the infamous potholes will be fixed as well.

But Olmsted added that despite all the work being done, one public treasure is in no danger of going anywhere.

"We do get a lot of people ask about the mural down there, and that will be preserved throughout the construction of the project too. It’s a great mural and we definitely want to make sure that it’s still there at the end of the project," Olmsted added.

That’s not the only project happening in town. Improvements are being made on I-90 from East Laurel to West Billings that include resurfacing and road safety enhancements.

But as far as the underpass project goes, Olmsted said the amount of work going into it means traffic will be slowed down for quite a while.

"It’ll probably be pretty well into the fall by the time this project is done. It’s a big project and there’s a lot of moving parts," Olmsted said.