Ugh: The 20-Month Detour For Drivers At 51st & Lewis

The signs went up this morning.

"At least for the last year we've been gearing up."

Adam Thomas works for Express, which sits on the northwest corner of Lewis and the construction.

"Friday afternoon we huddled up here as a group and said we're not sure what's going to happen Monday morning. Are we going to be able to get off the highway, find an alternative route."

The bridge across Lewis avenue is closed, but it still doesn't stop drivers from trying to get around the barricades, despite the signs and all the advanced warning. The construction also means detours for Emergency vehicles.

"It won't affect response times if it will it will be a minimal."

EMSA's Mike McNeer says an ambulance is posted at 51st and Peoria and the construction won't change that. But, this latest detour might take the drivers some getting used to and during an emergency time is precious.

"We have the ability to give directions. We have a megaphone on the front of the truck, we need to, we don't try to very much, cause it gets confusing but we can give directions to get someone on out of the way," says Mike McNeer with EMSA.

Twenty months of construction before the Lewis construction will be completed, but Adam Thomas hopes contractors take a hint from his employer and the job is express.

"We know that in the long run it's going to be beneficial for Tulsa."

The project costs about 40 million dollars and will take about 20 months to complete.