A project to improve a 1.8-mile section of Brooke Road in Stafford County will take longer than expected.

The road has been closed since September in the area of Eskimo Hill Road while crews work on the $5.2 million project, which calls for such improvements as widening the lanes and shoulders, realigning the road and enhancing stormwater drainage with new culverts.

Work was supposed to wrap up this month, but the project completion has been pushed back to September, the county said in a Monday news release.

The latest delay is the second extension for the project. Work was initially expected to be completed in January, but record-setting rainfall impacted progress.

Spokeswoman Shannon Howell said on Monday that “two unexpected factors” led to the second delay.

The first problem, she said, was “materials being used in the wetlands area were not performing satisfactorily.”

The county and the contractor, along with the Virginia Department of Transportation, found a substitute material, which had to be approved by VDOT.

The second issue involved the plan for relocating Virginia Dominion Energy power lines, which had to be changed. And that move required more utility easements, Howell said.

The Brooke Road work is among several safety projects suggested by what is known as the Youth Driver Task Force. That group was formed in 2004 following a rash of crashes that killed Stafford County high school students.

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Scott Shenk: 540/374-5436

sshenk@freelancestar.com

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