A new railroad bridge over the Osage River between St. Louis and Jefferson City is now open for both passenger and freight train use.
The new bridge cost $28 million, with most of the funds coming from the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Federal Railroad Administrator Joe Szabo says the project came in under budget and ahead of schedule.
“We now have double-track running the entire stretch from Jefferson City to St. Louis, and delays caused by rail traffic funneling into a single track over the old bridge are now a thing of the past,” said Szabo.
The Missouri Department of Transportation just released its 20-year plan for the state’s roads and bridges. MoDOT expects it will have about $17 billion dollars to pay for the plan. However, if it completed all the maintenance and construction suggested by Missouri citizens in a recent survey, it would need a budget of $70 billion.
On Wednesday's Up to Date, we talk about the plan and how the state will prioritize its future projects.
So imagine you’ve got a budget for home improvements. You’ve pared it down to the bare bones. You know exactly how much you can afford and you won’t spend any more than that. Now cut that budget in half. What things do you leave behind? And what are your top priorities?
This exact situation is happening to the Missouri Department of Transportation. With their budget being slashed to just about half, MoDOT is preparing to enter maintenance mode.
While he complimented lawmakers for increasing funding for K-12 schools and higher education, he also criticized them for passing legislation that would cut state income tax rates for individuals and corporations. He told reporters that the bill would gut state revenues by more than $800 million.
A so-called “Blue Ribbon” committee created by the Missouri House to examine the state’s transportation needs has released its report, one day before the start of this year’s legislative session. But the House Speaker doesn’t agree with some of the options panel members endorsed.
Those options include raising either the state’s fuel tax or creating a sales tax dedicated to transportation needs. House Speaker Tim Jones says he prefers exploring options that are “revenue neutral.”
The Missouri Department of Transportation is swift to react to a new regulation prohibiting drivers of large commercial vehicles from using cell phones.
The Missouri agency says the rule from the National Transportation Safety Board will be enforced effective January 3rd. It will prohibit truck and bus drivers from reaching for, holding or dialing any mobile phone while they are behind the wheel of the moving vehicle.
Kansas City, KS – The Environmental Protection Agency accuses MoDOT of failing to protect streams along two highway construction jobs. Inspectors allegedly found sediment was allowed to seep into a half dozen creeks and unnamed tributaries in Camden and Wayne Counties in central Missouri.
Kansas City, MO – KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Engineers at the Missouri Department of Transportation closed the westbound I-470 interchange to westbound I-435, as well as northbound Route 71 to westbound I-435 at 3 Trails Crossing yesterday. The damage from a sink hole at that location has expanded, making it necessary to immediately close the roadway.
Jefferson City, MO – You won't see nearly as many bulldozers and paving trucks working to fix and expand Missouri highways. The upcoming five-year construction program approved today cuts away two thirds of what was spent last year.
What was approved by Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission barely has funds to take care of what's here now.
Kansas City, Mo. – The new Missouri River bridge replacing the Paseo span will be close enough to completion to carry traffic by year's end.
MoDot will start shifting lanes of traffic from the Paseo to the Bond Bridge by fall. Highway officials say the Bond won't be finished until next year, but at least one northbound lane should be open by Christmas.
Most visible work now is installing cables hooking the highly visible pylon to the floor of the new bridge. The pylon stands more than 300 feet tall and supports the entire structure.