USH 53/USH 63 Trego Interchange

Posted By: Mark Petersen ACEC WI News, Awards,

2024 Engineering Excellence Best of State

Entering Firm: Ayres Associates
Client: Wisconsin Department of Transportation

The USH 53/63 intersection in Northwest Wisconsin was a notorious hotspot for dangerous at-grade intersections and severe crashes. Serving as a crucial route for tourists, residents, and commercial trucks bound for northern Minnesota, the four-lane highway presented significant safety challenges.

Prioritizing Safety

Ayres Associates spearheaded a transformative project aiming to upgrade the at-grade intersection to a full-service interchange. The new interchange is strategically located south of the old intersection to mitigate the possibility of high-speed crashes. By using an interchange instead of an at-grade intersection, the most severe crashes were eliminated. Even small improvements like fencing to discourage ATV and pedestrian traffic makes an impact. The new interchange includes new service roads and the realignment of other county highways and local roads. All these efforts combine to prioritize safety while keeping traffic flowing.

Awards judge Brandon Braithwaite said, “It's clear the USH 53/USH 63 Trego Interchange required substantial governmental coordination with multiple agencies, as well as extensive public outreach for such a significant project affecting a charming northwoods town.”

Making an Impact

The project involved designing critical elements such as the interchange structure, the Wild Rivers trail overpass, and retaining walls. Ayres seamlessly incorporated the structural plans from the client into the final package. The project stands as a testament to the team’s commitment to enhancing safety, promoting efficiency and transforming vital intersections for the communities they serve.

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