Maps, plans, specifications and estimates
Whenever the commissioner of transportation shall have determined upon the construction or improvement of a state highway, or section thereof, he shall make or cause to be made surveys, and suitable preliminary maps, plans and specifications. The commissioner shall have the following powers and duties in respect to such highways:
He shall cause the highway or section thereof so determined to be improved to be mapped both in outline and profile.
He may provide for a deviation from the line of a highway already existing, if thereby a shorter or more direct highway, or a lessened gradient may be obtained without decreasing the usefulness of the highway. If such deviation requires the consequential relocation of any tracks and appurtenances of a railroad company, he may acquire adequate right of way to provide for the relocation of the highway as well as the railroad tracks, pursuant to section thirty of this chapter, and he may enter into a written agreement with the owner of the lands from which the tracks shall be relocated to exchange such lands for the lands acquired for their relocation. The work of relocating the tracks may be done by the owner, and the commissioner of transportation is hereby empowered to enter into an agreement with the owner for the performance of all or any part of the work at the expense of the state, and such expense shall be deemed to be a part of the cost of the relocation of the highway.
He may provide for the widening of an existing highway.
He shall cause to be prepared preliminary plans and specifications for the construction or improvement of such highway or section thereof providing for a telford, macadam or gravel roadway, or other suitable construction, taking into consideration climate, soil and materials to be had in the vicinity thereof, and the extent and nature of the traffic likely to be upon such highway, specifying in his judgment the kind of highway a wise economy demands.
He shall provide in such plans and specifications for necessary culverts, drains, ditches, waterways, embankments, guard rails and retaining walls, and he may also provide for cattle passes wherever he may deem them to be necessary and suitable in the interest of public safety and as a traffic precaution.
He may provide therein for the removal or planting of trees, and seeding or sodding, within the boundaries of the highway, when necessary for the preservation thereof.
He may provide therein for the removal of, or the trimming of any trees within the boundaries of the highway necessary for the convenience or safety of the public, or the construction or preservation of the highway.
He shall provide therein for the erection of suitable guide boards.
He may provide for such other work as may be required to complete the construction or improvement in a proper manner.
He shall cause an estimate to be made of the cost of the construction of such highways or section thereof in accordance with such plans and specifications. In making such estimate he shall cause to be ascertained and specified with all practical accuracy the quantity of embankment, excavation and masonry, the quantity of all materials to be used and all items of work to be placed under contract.