PRESQUE ISLE, Me. (WAGM) - A quieter, more pedestrian-friendly downtown. That's what City Manager Martin Puckett envisions for the city, now that the bypass between the Fort and Conant roads has been completed.
"We hope to see a decrease in the truck traffic in the downtown," Presque Isle City Manager Martin Puckett said. "We did a look at the study that examined a serious percentage of truck traffic no longer coming through the downtown. I believe it was around 20 - 25 percent."
Rerouting heavier vehicles away from Main Street has been the goal for quite some time.
"The hope is a lot of trucks that currently have to take Main Street and Academy Street to get over to Easton will now be able to stay on the Fort Road and then take the new bypass across to the Conant Road," MDOT Region 5 Director, Bob Watson, said.
Watson says plans are in the works for the next phase of the project, section 1, which would run from the Conant Road to an area of U.S. Route 1 near the Presque Isle/Westfield town line near Clark Brook Hill.
"Right now that section is being designed," Watson said. "Right-of-way acquisition is taking place, and timing is uncertain on construction because it's going to be dependent on the funding for construction."
The final phase would connect the Caribou Road with the section opening this week.
"Eventually section 3, somewhere out in the future, will connect where the connector," Watson said. "Where the bypass comes into the Fort Road and it will go across the Aroostook River and touch back down on Route 1."
Watson says no time-frame has been designated for completing either section 1 or section 3. He says completion of those projects depends on when funds become available.