JEFFERSON CITY – Folks traveling to the Missouri State Fair in Sedalia, headed off to college or getting in some vacation time before summer ends will likely cause a spike in traffic on Interstate 70 in the next few weeks.
That’s why the Missouri Department of Transportation is reminding I-70 motorists that the interstate is reduced to one lane in each direction near Boonville for a bridge repair project. The Lamine River bridge project is one of 15 work zones on I-70 this construction season.
The Missouri State Fair, which draws thousands of people to Sedalia each year, runs Aug. 11-21. In addition, many Missouri college and university students will be moving into their living quarters during the next couple of weeks. And August often marks the last hurrah for summer travel before Labor Day.
“We expect to see an increase in travel on I-70 in the next couple of weeks, and we don’t want motorists to be caught off guard by the road work we have going on, especially the Lamine River bridge project,” said David Silvester, district engineer for MoDOT’s Central District.
The eastbound Lamine River bridge is carrying one lane of traffic in each direction while the westbound bridge gets a new driving surface. The work, which is expected to be completed by the end of August, has caused traffic delays of 20-40 minutes on peak travel days, mainly Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. I-70 motorists are encouraged to use alternate east-west routes, such as U.S. Routes 50 and 36, to avoid the construction.
Using the zipper merge technique – traveling in both lanes all the way to the merge point, and then taking turns to merge into the open lane – appears to be reducing the length and duration of the traffic backups, Silvester said.
More information about the Lamine River bridges project, including tools to help motorists navigate the work zone, can be found at www.modot.org/central/I70LamineBridge.htm.