The Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) has a busy year planned for road construction in the St. Louis area.
On Tuesday, MoDOT officials unveiled detailed plans for five major projects around the St. Louis area in 2013 that total nearly $211 million.
"So it's a significant amount of money we're about to spend on roads around the state, around the region," explained Ed Hassinger, MoDOT District Engineer for the St. Louis region.
Details for another project along Interstate 70 in St. Peters at Mid Rivers Mall Drive will come later this year.
Hassinger said because of the mild winter, crews worked late into 2012 and 2013 construction projects will begin early this year.
The following are the projects MoDOT have planned. Hassinger said drivers can expect road and lane closures as these get underway.
"This is the time to kind of gauge your route," Hassinger warned drivers. He said it will simply make drivers' lives a lot easier if they take alternate routes.
Interstate 270 Southbound - $12 Million
"We finished the work northbound. The initial reports are really good. We've improved congestion," Hassinger said.
Northbound I-270 between Dougherty Ferry Road and Interstate 44 has expanded to five lanes. Now it's time to do the same to southbound I-270 in that area. Lane closures are expected in the southbound lanes between Manchester Road and I-44 beginning in late February. They'll take place during non-peak traffic hours.
Hassinger said the goal is to alleviate evening rush hour congestion along I-270 in this area.
Interstate 70 Blanchette Bridge - $63 Million
Hassinger said I-70 is down from five lanes in each direction to three lanes in each direction while crews work to build a new bridge over the Missouri River. Construction is expected to be completed in fall 2013.
Highway 40 Daniel Boone Bridge - $111 Million
Construction begins in January on the new bridge that will replace the current westbound bridge. Hassinger said there will be lane closures during off-peak hours and a few weekends during the construction which is expected to last three years. Rock blasting will also begin on the St. Charles side of the bridge in February. Westbound Highway 40 lanes will also narrow later this year.
"Not a lot of impacts there, but the project is on track and we're moving at a fairly fast pace," Hassinger explained.
The new bridge is set to open late 2014.
Wildwood Route 109 Widening - $ 7 Million
MoDOT and the City of Wildwood are working together on this project aimed at improving the safety and traffic flow along Route 109 from Clayton Road to Route 100. Construction is set to begin late summer or early fall 2014.
Hassinger said people need to watch for one-way traffic and the work being done on off-peak hours.
Route 109 will be widened to four lanes and roundabouts will be added to the Pond-Grover Loop Road and at the westbound Route 100 intersection.
Resurfacing work will also take place from south of Route 100 to the Meramec River beginning in coming weeks. This will create daily lane closures.
Highway 40 at Tower Grove - $17.9 million
MoDOT has partnered with BJC on this project because it willl improve access to the BJC campus, which Hassinger said is the largest employer in the St. Louis area. The project will close Highway 40 in both directions beginning Jan. 25. The project will replace the four overpass bridges on Highway 40, east of the Kingshighway exit. Two of those bridges, Taylor Avenue and Newstead Avenue, close next week, but there will be Highway 40 lane restrictions throughout the project.
"So big changes in how traffic moves in that area. People need to be aware of that," Hassinger said. He said drivers should use alternate routes, including I-44, I-70, Manchester Road and Forest Park Parkway.
Hassinger said $9.75 million for the project is coming from BJC and the Washington University Medical Center.
Interstate 70 at Mid Rivers
A project at Mid Rivers is coming. The project hasn't yet been awarded, but is expected to be awarded in February and MoDOT will release more details in coming months.
For more information on upcoming projects visit www.modot.org or call 1-888-ASK MODOT.