With the Okee bridge and Country Road V construction finished up on Nov. 7, the detours are done and normal traffic returns.
Those who have driven across the bridge, which has new railings and had its deck replaced to extend its service life, will notice new street parking and sidewalks. This was placed on the north side of Country Road V between Old Sauk Road and Lake Wisconsin, and on the side between Madeline Summers Park and Lucky’s on the Lake restaurant.
Other updates from the $2.3 million project to the area included:
- Underground storm sewer system and outfall into the lake on the east side of Fitz’s on the Lake restaurant
- Realignment of County Highway V at State Highway 113 intersection and Shamrock Road/Old Sauk Road intersection to improve the geometry
- Reconstruction of the County Highway V railroad crossing, including new signals and a gate
This project has been ongoing since the beginning of July and business owners in the area are happy to see the construction completed. Fitz’s on the Lake owner Mark Obois said this will ultimately lead to a safe environment when people are coming through.
“Now people aren’t walking in the road,” Obois said. Especially in the winter, I think it will be more prevalent because people didn’t want to walk at all on the side of the road in winter time.”
Roads remained open through the construction but Obois said it was difficult at first for customers to navigate. However, despite the detours, “road closed” signs and multiple months of construction, he said it was a pleasant surprise to see that his restaurant fared well through the work. Obois worked with other businesses on the lake to make sure the public was aware of the detour routes and how they could get to the area.
But with the bridge back, Obois believes working and traveling through Okee is improved and will be better for everyone when the busy season picks up again in the summer.
“I think it’s really going to be fantastic,” he said. “It’s going to make it a better experience for businesses that come to Okee.”