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Springfield Area News Releases

Springfield District Office 417-895-7600

March 23, 2007 12:00 AM
Bridge Work to Close Westbound I-44 at U.S. 65/Springfield
Three Nights (11 p.m. to 5 a.m.) During Week of March 26

MoDOT, District 8, Springfield -- Multiple detours, with plenty of detour signs, will be in place at the I-44/U.S. 65 interchange in Springfield over three nights the week of March 26 when a section of westbound I-44 is closed approaching the interchange.

Westbound I-44 is scheduled to be closed between Route 744 (Mile Marker 84) and Glenstone Avenue (Mile Marker 80) between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. on March 27, March 28 and possibly March 29 -- Tuesday night into Wednesday morning, Wednesday night into Thursday morning and possibly Thursday night into Friday morning, the Missouri Department of Transportation said.

Westbound I-44 traffic will be reduced to one lane approaching Route 744 (Mile Marker 84) where the detour into the City of Springfield begins.

Bad weather could cause postponement.

Bridge girders going up; Detours needed:

The closing of the four-mile stretch of westbound I-44 on the northeast side of Springfield is needed to enable contractors to lift heavy steel girders into place to span the westbound lanes. The girders are for a new bridge under construction that will carry northbound Route 65 traffic to westbound I-44. The interchange is being rebuilt in a $25-million project.

During the nighttime bridge-girder work, drivers who want to head west on I-44 at Route 65 will have to use detours.

Detours also will be set up for drivers who normally would use the ramps on the westbound side of I-44 at Route 65. In all, three more ramps will be closed during the overnight work this week, joining two ramps that already are closed longterm because of construction in those areas of the interchange.

In addition, the eastbound left-hand lane of I-44 will be closed between Glenstone Avenue (Mile Marker 80) and Route 65 (Mile Marker 82) to keep traffic away from the median.

Detour signs will guide traffic onto Kearney Street (Route 744) and Glenstone Avenue (Loop 44) -- state routes that follow Springfield city streets. City driving, even overnight when traffic is lighter, will require drivers to slow down and to be alert at traffic signals and other intersections and driveways.

A key pivot point for the detours will be the interchange at Route 65 and Kearney Street.

Here are the detours:

* For westbound I-44 through Springfield: Exit on Route 744 (Mile Marker 84), turn south across I-44 to stop sign, stay on Route 744 as it turns west into Springfield and becomes Kearney Street, stay on Kearney Street four miles to Glenstone Avenue, turn north on Glenstone Avenue one-quarter mile back to I-44, head west on I-44.

* For westbound I-44 to northbound Route 65: Exit on Route 744 (Mile Marker 84), travel west on Route 744 (becomes Kearney Street), north on Route 65.

* For westbound I-44 to southbound Route 65: Exit on Route 744 (Mile Marker 84), west on Route 744 (becomes Kearney Street), south on Route 65.

* For Eastbound I-44 to northbound Route 65: Stay on I-44 east of Route 65, exit at Route 744 (Mile Marker 84), west on Route 744 (becomes Kearney Street), north on Route 65.

* For Southbound Route 65 to westbound I-44: Turn east on I-44 and exit on Route 744 (Mile Marker 84), west on Route 744 (becomes Kearney Street) to Glenstone Avenue, north on Glenstone Avenue to I-44, west on I-44.

* For Northbound Route 65 to westbound I-44: Exit on Route 744 (Kearney Street), west on Kearney Street to Glenstone Avenue, north on Glenstone Avenue to I-44, west on I-44.

Safety tips during closing of westbound I-44:

* Drivers from the Springfield region should be prepared to follow detour signs or take an alternate route to avoid the area surrounding the I-44/65 interchange.

* Watch for slow-moving tractor-trailer rigs making their way along one of the detours across Springfield as they travel through southwest Missouri.

* Be patient and watch for sudden lane changes by any vehicle trying to follow detour signs. Drivers from outside the Springfield region will not be as familiar with the state routes through the city.

 
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