Freeway Collapse
5:39 pm
Mon July 19, 2010

Bridge Is Sound, Approaches Rotten

Kansas City, MO – Soil samples were being lifted today from beneath the part of I-470 that collapsed over the weekend. There is no encouraging news forthcoming for thousands of commuters who had to find "another way."

Kansas City District Engineer for the Missouri Department of Transportation Beth Wright summed up the mess, " its weeks or months, but I can't tell you a specific estimate."

It will be that long before the public will be able to drive I-470 westward to link up with I-435 and into the Kansas suburbs.

Fill dirt began leaking out of a retaining wall and parts of the highway fell.
Wright put it simply, saying, " it totally lost all of its structure"

Wright hopes to have a demolition contract in place by week's end. Then comes fixing the highway. Thousands of commuters had to find different ways to move around the southeast side of the metro today.

Wright says bridge approaches sag all the time, but this was remarkable. And the district engineer says it's impossible to say yet if there was design or construction error on the 7 year old roadway.