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For more information, contact Sally Oxenhandler at (573) 522-3375 or MoDOT Communications at (573) 751-3322.

June 02, 2017 10:57 AM
Route 63 Traffic Switch near Jefferson City Starts Monday

JEFFERSON CITY – Traffic on Route 63 over the Katy Trail bridge three miles north of Jefferson City will be reduced to one lane in each direction beginning Monday so a new deck can be put on the southbound bridge.

The traffic switch will take place around 4 a.m. on Monday. At that time, the southbound Route 63 bridge over the Katy Trail will be closed and southbound Route 63 traffic will be re-routed over the northbound Route 63 bridge, which will carry one lane of traffic in each direction. Traffic will be separated by concrete barriers.

Traffic will run head to head until the replacement of the southbound bridge deck is complete in mid-August. The entire project is scheduled to be completed in September.

“Diverting both directions of traffic to the northbound lanes will allow the bridge deck replacement to be completed faster and safer than if we were to complete the work in stages on the southbound bridge,” said Missouri Department of Transportation Resident Engineer Aaron Peck. “In the end, we receive a better product that will serve the residents of Missouri for years to come.”  

MoDOT is expecting northbound traffic to experience about a five-minute delay during the morning rush period and a 15- to 25-minute delay during peak travel times in the evening. Southbound traffic is estimated to encounter delays of five to 10 minutes during morning and evening rush periods.

Peck says drivers can help make travel through the area flow better. First, they can use the zipper merge concept to travel through the work zone. When traffic is slowed or stopped, the zipper merge encourages motorists to use both lanes of traffic until they reach the point where the road is closed, then take turns with other drivers to safely and smoothly ease into the remaining lane.

“The zipper merge has been shown to reduce traffic backups by up to 50 percent,” Peck said.

Second, if drivers are involved in a minor incident, they need to Steer It and Clear It, meaning they need to move their vehicle to the shoulder of the roadway or to another safe spot out of the way.  

Message boards and signs will direct traffic through the work zone. In addition, a Smart Work Zone system is in place to keep motorists informed and traffic moving. The system uses cameras and sensors to provide real-time travel updates to motorists via message boards when backups occur.

Other travel tools available to help drivers include:

  • Traveler Information Map - located at www.modot.org, the map provides current traffic conditions. Vehicle crashes and other incidents are noted on the map, which will inform drivers that the road is closed, to expect delays or that delays are possible. The map also shows real-time traffic flow, with green showing traffic is moving normally, yellow indicating that traffic is moving at a medium rate and red meaning traffic is moving slowly.
  • 24-hour toll-free number – MoDOT’s toll-free number – 888-275-6636 – is answered 24 hours a day, seven days a week and 365 days a year. Callers can speak with a customer service representative to get the latest traffic information.
  • Project website – Information about the project is updated regularly and can be found at www.modot.org/central.

In addition to the new deck, which will widen the bridge, the project will bring the guardrail and bridge barrier on the southbound structure up to current standards. The work will allow the bridge, which is more than 60 years old, to provide an additional 20 to 30 years of service.

Some occasional overhead work on the bridge will also require full and partial closures of the Katy Trail to bicycle and pedestrian traffic underneath during weekday hours.

For more information about this project or other transportation-related matters, please call 1-888-ASK-MoDOT (275-6636), visit www.modot.org/central, or follow the Central District Facebook page at facebook.com/MoDOTCentralMissouriDistrict.

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