Luther Road is going to be widened from Memorial Road to Waterloo, but not until next year. Oklahoma County District One Superintendent Brian Jasper says surveyors are out preparing for the project to create safety shoulders and widening. The project does not include Luther’s Town limits, he said, because of width issues. Jasper said the work on that project is probably a year away.
He also said the county is staking Coffee Creek from Luther Road west to Triple X for rehabilitation of that two miles. “It will include grinding, chemical modification of the sub-grade and asphalt for the surface. This project will begin on or about July 9 and hopefully be finished in 30-45 days,” he said.
Meanwhile, there is small movement, and continued uncertainty on whether Luther Road in Logan County, from Waterloo Road to Highway 105, will ever be paved.
Logan County District Two Commissioner Mike Pearson said the right of way acquisition has been completed, utilities will be relocated, and pipeline depth will be determined on the southern two miles, Waterloo to Charter Oak Road, on Luther Road. Those are requirements of Logan County to complete before the Oklahoma Department of Transportation will proceed with bidding on the work.
However, even though Logan County is proceeding with its end of the deal, that doesn’t mean ODOT is gearing up to do the work any time soon. This paving job has been the talk of legend for at least ten years, maybe more. Pearson said it’s on hold due to the Oklahoma Legislature taking money from the CIRB fund to deal with state budget issues.
“The construction date is real fragile and could be delayed. It depends on our new legislators and the state economy. And getting our CIRB funding back,” said Pearson.
CIRB stands for “County Improvements for Roads and Bridges” and although it is funded, by a 2006 state law, with $120 million annually from state motor vehicle collection revenue, plus federal, local and tribal monies, the legislature has taken $230 million from the fund since 2015. The CIRB law directors the funds to be equally distributed among eight Oklahoma Transporation Commission districts, not individual counties, and administered through ODOT.
However, ODOT has put the brakes on new CIRB projects, according to a May 2018 ODOT memo, “because of the legislature’s diversion of $230 million to fund ‘other areas of state government,’ ODOT will delay new (CIRB) projects until the fund replenishes,” the memo said.
Meantime after each rain, District Two graders fan out to scrape the washboard surface and potholes on Luther Road, and the other dirt roads of Logan County.