Sandy Johnstone loves to entertain guests at her house in Masterson Station, but she hates asking people to drive through the construction on Leestown Road to get there.
"I understand it'll be nice when it's done," Johnstone, a 16-year resident of Masterson Station, said. "Whenever that may be."
Leestown Road is undergoing an expansion that will add three lanes to the now two-lane road. The work will cause traffic delays until December 2015.
Natasha Lacy, spokeswoman for the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet, said Leestown Road is being widened as part of a larger state project in northwest Lexington. That project includes the 2.45-mile extension of Citation Boulevard from Jaggie Fox Way to Leestown Road at Alexandria Drive.
State lawmakers approved $154 million in road plans for Fayette County in April, including $4.8 million for the widening of Leestown. The combined state project began last year after L-M Asphalt Partners of Lexington signed a $38 million contract.
Crews began moving utilities last year to start the widening project. Last week, crews were busy guiding traffic and laying asphalt.
According to the Transportation Cabinet, average daily traffic on Leestown at Greendale Road was 39,094 vehicles in 2012. In 2013, average daily traffic on Lees town off New Circle Road was 47,095 vehicles, officials said.
That has caused some travel delays, but area residents have been finding ways around the Leestown construction, which stretches from New Circle Road to Masterson Station Park.
Jeff Crabb, president of the Masterson Station Neighborhood Association, said residents avoid Leestown construction by taking longer routes out of their subdivisions.
"I think it's worth the hassle," Crabb said. "We've been putting up with a two-lane road here for years."
As residents avoid the road, Urban County Councilwoman Shevawn Akers said, traffic has increased traffic on Georgetown Road and Alexandria Drive.
Still, Akers said, the widening of Leestown will be well worth it. She said residents have anticipated the project for a while and, as a Masterson Station resident herself, she hopes to see commercial growth in the area as a result.
"Commercial businesses should see this area as a huge opportunity," she said. "It's a small town out there, and it really doesn't have what you would expect as far as basic businesses go."
Akers said she would like to see restaurants, a gas station, a general store and possibly sports facilities in the Masterson Station area.
Leestown isn't the only road facing traffic jams caused by construction.
Construction on New Circle Road also could affect northwest Lexington residents. The project, approved by state lawmakers in April, would rehabilitate and widen New Circle from Versailles to Leestown roads at a cost of $19.4 million.
Lacy said construction was expected to start in spring 2015.
Road projects such as the Leestown widening do indicate growth.
When Johnstone first moved to the Masterson Station area, she said there were only a few homes in the neighborhood.
Regardless, she will be happy when the road work is completed. She hates being "held up."
"Having to stop 12 times on a stretch of a few miles is annoying," she said.