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Posted on: February 23, 2021

Warrior Lane Improvements – Details and Timing

warrior lane drawing

Project Details

Due to Waukee’s community growth and traffic congestion in the area, S. Warrior Lane will soon be widened to three lanes from Marshall Drive to Bel Aire Drive. The current five-way intersection at S. Warrior Lane, Northview Drive and Ashworth Drive will transition into a four-leg, one-lane roundabout to move traffic more efficiently and to increase safety. Northview Drive will be permanently disconnected from the existing intersection and will be connected to Ashworth Drive 300 feet to the west of the new roundabout intersection. Moving the connection of Northview Drive from Warrior Lane to Ashworth Drive will decrease pass-through traffic on Northview Drive while maintaining local access for residents.

Construction will occur in the spring and summer of 2021. Depending on weather, the first stage of construction could begin as early as March and will include the closure of Warrior Lane south of Ashworth Drive to the north entrance of Waukee Middle School. Northview Drive and Bel Aire Drive will be closed at Warrior Lane. 

A lot of studies, engineering and planning were factored into the decision to transition this intersection to a roundabout.

“Several years ago, the City began purchasing adjacent homes as they became available in preparation for future improvements to S. Warrior Lane. Our team began studying the five-way intersection and S. Warrior Lane in late 2018,” said Shive-Hattery Civil Engineer Nate Hardisty. “We collected traffic counts and patterns and produced traffic simulation models from the data. Different improvement options were tested and compared with the selected one-lane roundabout, proving it to be safer and more efficient.”

“Yes, Waukee drivers are used to stop signs and traffic signals,” said Hardisty, “But this particular roundabout should make for an easy transition as there is only one lane in any given direction. Drivers will not have to navigate the roundabout with vehicles directly next to them.”

It’s also set up to be safer for pedestrians than a typical stop sign- or traffic signal-controlled intersection.

“For pedestrians crossing an intersection with a traffic signal, they must cross at least one traffic lane in each direction in addition to turn lanes,” said Hardisty. “The typical crossing of a signalized intersection by a pedestrian is four to five times longer with more potential vehicle conflict points than that of this roundabout.”

Federal Highway Administration studies and others show a large reduction of crashes, particularly injury-related crashes, at roundabouts.

“With these improvements in place, pedestrians will cross only one lane of traffic at a time before reaching a landing zone, meaning they only need to watch for vehicles coming from one direction at a time,” added Waukee Assistant Public Works Director of Engineering Sara Kappos.

More details and continued updates can be found here.

Full Project Timeline

STAGE 1: March (tentative/weather permitting)-June 1

  • Roadway improvements will begin as weather allows. At this time, the contractor is aiming for a March 1 start date; however, with winter still very much here, this may be delayed until weather allows.
  • The staging map (p. 1) (to the right) shows the area of roadway that will be closed to traffic during the spring school semester. The signed detour route for the Stage 1 closure of Warrior Lane will be University Avenue and Ashworth Drive. 

STAGES 2 AND 3: June 1-Aug. 20

  • After the Waukee Community School District dismisses for summer break (currently scheduled for June 1), the project area between Bel Aire Drive and the north entrance into Waukee Middle School will close. See the staging map (p. 2).
  • The remainder of the project area, including the five-way intersection, will close after the completion of Stage 2 for the entire summer. See the staging map (p. 3). The signed detour route for Phases 2 and 3 will be University Avenue, SE Alice’s Road, Hickman Road and 6th Street. 
  • The project has two completion dates.
  • The first completion date of Aug. 20, 2021 is for the intersection of Ashworth Drive and S. Warrior Lane. This date is set prior to the start of the fall school semester to avoid impacts to school traffic. This includes the completion of all sidewalks and trails to be reconstructed as part of this project.

MISC.: Aug. 21-Sept. 30

  • The second completion date is for all remaining restoration efforts, such as seeding, plantings and other miscellaneous work outside of the travel lanes on Warrior Lane and Ashworth Drive. This date is Sept. 30, 2021. See the Overall Phasing Plan map.
  • The Heart of the Warrior Trail will be impacted during Stage 3. The contractor will set up temporary granular bypass routes around the perimeter of the construction area, as needed.

The City of Waukee is grateful for your patience as we strive to improve the community’s infrastructure and ultimately the safety of Waukee drivers and pedestrians. Project updates, photos, videos and more will be posted to the City’s website throughout the duration of this project and all other capital improvement projects. Visit the project update page to learn more. Subscribe to text and email notifications related to traffic closures and other community alerts via the City website here, by texting ‘50263’ to 888777 or by visiting Nixle.com.


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