Ongoing work to widen U.S. 41A west of Madisonville has affected at least one local business in a major way, forcing Father and Son’s Liquors West on Lake Peewee Lane to relocate as the Kentucky Department of Transportation (KYTC) makes preparations to begin the next phase of construction.
In September, the longtime business closed its doors at the location it has occupied since opening, and moved into a structure that owners built in 2019, located a few hundred yards further down Lake Peewee Lane. The move has allowed the store to remain open with only limited interruption, although employees say some regular customers have mistakenly believed they have gone out of business.
“The store is still open,” said company spokesperson Joy Patel. “We still have the same hours.”
KYTC began working in 2018 to widen the road from U.S. 41 to Industrial Road, just past the GE Aviation plant. U.S. 41A will be transition from two lanes to five, allowing for better flow of local traffic. The project, however, has been slowed by the COVID-19 pandemic and the need to relocate utilities along the route.
One of those utilities includes gas lines owned by Texas Gas that run through the lot that housed the previous location of Father and Son’s Liquors West. A crew from Louisiana-based WHC Energy Services has been working to move those lines since the store relocated last month.
According to Patel, moving Father and Sons was part of the plan that had been worked out with the KYTC early on in the project.
“The state was expanding U.S. 41A and needed to relocate gas lines,” he stated. “They gave us another lot nearby. We really just swapped property. No money was exchanged.”
Patel hopes that customers will realize the store is still in business, and located not far from their previous location.
Some form of the U.S. 41A project has been on highway plans since 2000, but it wasn’t until 2017 when the Pennyrile Area Development District Regional Transportation Committee and the District 2 office of the KYTC deemed it one of the two most important projects in Hopkins County that it got the boost it needed to get started.
The current phase of construction is expected to be completed by mid-2022.