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Politics & Government

Sussex County will start fast tracking road improvment projects from DelDOT

Sussex County Government

Sussex County looks to jump start some county road improvements by fronting the money to DelDOT to get them underway.

Sussex County Council signed another Memorandum of Understanding with the Delaware Department of Transportation - allowing the county to pick projects they want to prioritize and move them up DelDOT’s list.

County Administrator Todd Lawson says almost no work is needed on the county side.

“We pay the funding but they manage the project. There’s really no obligation for management on the counties part other than Ms. Jennings’ Finance Department to reimburse the funding along the way. They take care of everything and we literally pay for it.”

The county gets to pick what projects it deems in need of improvement earlier than DelDOT has them scheduled, and advances the money to get them started within 60 days.

DelDOT then returns the money once that project comes up in the budget when it was originally scheduled.

Lawson says with this new agreement, the county can drastically speed up road improvement projects.

“So Sussex County will loan DelDOT the money, I said that. And by funding the project we will speed up the completion of the project. That’s critical as well, there’s no need to pick a project that’s right around the corner to be completed. We’re looking at a long range plan where a project may not get started for 5, 6, 7 years — we select that project and it fast forwards by almost 4 to 5 years.”

On top of approving the MOU, county council also gave the go ahead for the first fast tracked project; the intersection of Cave Neck, Hudson and Sweetbriar roads west of Lewes.

Crews will make improvements to the safety and efficiency of the intersection, which is becoming more congested with more residential developments popping up.

The $4 Million upgrade to the intersection is desperately needed to improve safety in the growing developments, but wasn’t scheduled to start by DelDOT until 2026.

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