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Speed, inattention and tailgating are cited as the cause of most crashes in areas where roadwork is under way.

For more information, contact Marisa Brown-Ellison, Community Relations Manager, 573-248-2502

April 07, 2011 09:25 AM
New Road Will Be Built on Route 79 Near Ashburn
Project Will Begin This Summer

HANNIBAL - By the end of 2011, a new piece of Route 79 about one mile long will be built in the Salt River Bottoms near Ashburn to permanently fix a problem with slides in the area.  The Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission awarded the project to Kolb Grading for  $2,039,459.40.

"We expect the project to be under construction sometime in May and completed before the end of the year," said MoDOT Transportation Project Manager Chris Knapp.

Route 79 was closed in November 2009 after a portion of the road just south of the community of Ashburn had given way to a slide.  MoDOT had repaired part of Route 79 in a nearby area less than two years before for the same problem.  "When the first slide occurred, we evaluated the entire area and discovered there were five other potential slides within about a one mile section," Knapp said.  After several public meetings and evaluating a variety of options, MoDOT determined the best solution was to re-route the road.

"We realize the inconvenience keeping the road closed this long has caused, yet in our current funding crisis, we had to move other projects out to later years to get this project funded," Knapp said.  Two bridges on Route 79 between Elsberry and Foley were originally slated for replacement this year.  They were moved to 2013 and 2014 to free up funding for the Route 79 project.

Pictures of the current problem are online at modot.org/northeast.  More information is being added to the website as it becomes available.

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