Officials hope to start work soon on Hart County rest stop that - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Officials hope to start work soon on Hart County rest stop that burned in January

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HART COUNTY, Ky. (WDRB) -- While it's hard to escape construction on I-65 in the summer, no crews have been working at a rest stop along the southbound lanes in Hart County, which is about 75 miles south of Louisville. 

"It's obvious when you drive by here, you haven't seen any change," said Kentucky Transportation Cabinet Spokesperson Chris Jessie. "The building is still basically the burned shell from when the fire took place." 

There's still yellow tape on the ground. The windows are boarded up, and there's a hole in the roof. The fire happened in early January and destroyed the building. Two maintenance workers were inside at the time, but luckily no one was hurt. 

Several truckers and visitors were parked outside when it happened. State transportation officials say the rest stop was popular: around 1,650 vehicles were stopping here everyday. So when will they be able to get it back open? 

"There's actually a contract, literally this week, is being awarded for the demolition," Jessie said. 

He says the process has taken longer than expected, but he hopes work will still begin this summer. 

"The demolition will take two or three months," Jessie said. 

Jessie says the demolition work will be covered by insurance, but the cost to rebuild have to come from the state. 

"It's certainly unexpected, so it's hard to find in the budget, already with things as tight as they are, where you come up with money to rebuild a rest area," Jessie said. 

Still, he says the rest stop will likely be up and running by around this time next year.

State officials say the fire has been ruled accidental and was electrical in nature. 

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