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READING, MA-The state’s highway agency has scaled back its plans to upgrade the Route 93/128 interchange but it will still involve taking a number of properties. A number of other alternatives are under remain on the table, but a controversial four-tier cloverleaf design has been scrapped.

“That was considered too intrusive,” Steve Young a spokesperson for MassHighway tells GlobeSt.com. Young says that it is still unclear exactly how much land will be taken to upgrade the interchange but he says that the state is now considering a three-tier cloverleaf design.

According to Peter Hechenbleikner, town manager, most of the land taken under the law of eminent domain will be residential. Those properties will be appraised and offers will be made to property owners based on market value.

Hechenbleikner tells GlobeSt.com that the current interchange has the highest volume of traffic in the state and is the site of more than 200 accidents a year. The state says its goals are to improve safety and improve traffic congestion. The state recently held its fourth public hearing on the plan. More than 1,000 people came to object to the four-tier design.

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