INTERSTATE PROJECT: Study Finds Endangered Bat

An I-80 interchange project expected to bring businesses and jobs to the west suburbs could be delayed due to a tiny problem.

While completing an environmental study, city officials discovered a single, endangered “Indiana bat” about half a mile from the Alice’s Road and 105th Street interchange project.

Before moving forward, officials must complete a study to determine how the bat species would be affected by the project.

West Des Moines mayor Steve Gaer estimates the study could move the start date of construction, which is scheduled for September, back four to five months.

“We’ve been working on that interchange for over ten years. This is a project that’s been on our priority list for a number of years and we thought we were just getting to the final issues and then this popped up at the list minute,” says Gaer.

The bat study will take place in May and will cost about $30,000.

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