The Chester Bridge has two 11-foot lanes and carries 7,000 vehicles per day. It connects the cities of Chester, Illinois and Perryville, Missouri across the Mississippi River via Route 51.
The current truss bridge was originally constructed in 1942 and was re-constructed in 1944 after a severe storm destroyed the main span. The bridge has allowed motorists to travel both east and west across the Mississippi River for nearly 80 years.
Over the course of seven decades, the Chester Bridge has become less functional for modern vehicles. Although the bridge is safe for travel, this aging structure is considered to be in poor condition.
The Missouri Department of Transportation has a project to rehabilitate and paint the Chester Bridge tentatively scheduled for construction in late summer 2021 through fall 2022. MoDOT must make the needed improvements to preserve the condition of the current bridge, in an effort to mitigate future restrictions between now and the time of the opening of a new bridge.
MoDOT tentatively plans to have a new bridge in place in 2028, but funding is not yet secured for the approximately $140 million replacement project.
Approach spans on the Missouri side of the river were repaired.
Environmental Assessment & Preferred Alternative
The Chester Bridge Study’s Environmental Assessment (EA) was recently approved for public distribution following a multi-year study. To access the study information, please click the link below.
To view the EA appendices, please click here.
Visit the link below to learn more about the upcoming Chester Bridge project and future plans to replace the bridge. This provides an in-depth look at some of the most frequently asked questions about the rehab and replacement projects, including impacts to traffic.
The Chester Bridge is a truss bridge originally constructed in 1942 to allow vehicles to cross the Mississippi River between Perryville, Missouri, and Chester, Illinois without using a ferry. The bridge was re-constructed in 1944 after a severe storm destroyed the main span.
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