WIS 26 corridor EIS - Selection of preferred alternative, North segment
The north segment begins at Baneck Lane north of Johnson Creek
and ends north of Watertown at WIS 60 East. This segment is about
17.2 miles in length, and includes the city of Watertown.
The preferred alternative is N1, the near west Watertown bypass
corridor. This route best provides a balance between having a
transportation system consistent with state, regional and local
needs with the environmental, economic and social impacts of the
A near west route is preferred as it provides transportation and
other benefits that the east alternatives did not provide,
The near west bypass route is 2.1 miles shorter than the near
east route, and 2.6 miles shorter than the far east route.
A near west bypass route is estimated to relocate about 25
percent more total trips, and 22 percent more truck trips, from
the local road system than an east route.
A west bypass, in conjunction with the existing WIS 16
corridor, provides a bypass route around three quarters of
Watertown. An east bypass route goes around only one half of the
A west bypass allows WIS 19 traffic to bypass the city
resulting in less traffic, particularly trucks, passing through
A west bypass allows traffic from Watertown's west industrial
park to bypass the city resulting in less traffic, particularly
trucks, along existing WIS 26 (Church Street) and passing
through the Bernard Street intersection.
A west bypass does not combine WIS 26 and WIS 16 traffic
within the existing WIS 16 corridor. The near east route
combines traffic and jeopardizes its long-term ability to handle
the increased traffic and operate safely. The far east route
does not combine traffic, but has twice the wetland impacts,
more relocations, and acquires more farmland outside the Urban
Service Area than the west bypass.
Both easterly routes go through a large contiguous forested
wetland with high functional value that is of concern to
The near west route requires a roadway bridge that clears the
Rock River, whereas both easterly routes require a bridge that
clears the Canadian Pacific Railroad tracks as well as the Rock
The near west route requires eight fewer residential and business
relocations than the near east route, and 14 fewer relocations
than the far east route.
Both easterly routes go through land abutting the Concord
Power Station and dedicated as a buffer zone.
Both easterly routes pass adjacent to a historic property just
north of Watertown.