The last bridge in MoDot’s Safe and Sound Improvement Program is set to open in Chariton County later in October. Click to hear KMZU’s Chelsea Wade speak with Customer Relations Manager Melissa Black:
This is the last of 802 bridges improved by the Safe and Sound Program. The ribon-cutting for the Highway 11 Bridge North of Mendon will be held October 29th, completing the program about two years ahead of schedule.
Press Release from the Missouri Department of Transportation
ST JOSEPH – Motorists across Missouri are now riding on more than 800 safer bridges, thanks to the Missouri Department of Transportation’s Safe & Sound Bridge Improvement Program that began in the spring of 2009. The program is complete two years ahead of schedule, with the dedication of the final bridge in the program – the Route 11 Bridge over the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad in Chariton County.
The 802nd bridge will be dedicated with a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 1 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 29, on the south side of the bridge. The public is invited to attend the event. The Route 11 BNSF Bridge, located five miles north of Mendon, closed for construction on Sept. 4 after being delayed several weeks when migratory birds were discovered on the bridge structure.
This is the 190th and final bridge for the 20 counties in Northwest Missouri. The Northwest also had the most bridges improved. All 20 counties had bridges improved, but Harrison County led the state with 25 and Nodaway County came not far behind with 21.
“We know how integral bridges are to our transportation system, and we listened when Missourians told us they wanted our deteriorated bridges improved,” said Northwest District Engineer Don Wichern. “With the Safe & Sound program, we have made an investment in 802 better bridges that will last for many years to come with wider structures that will require less maintenance.”
The Safe & Sound Program was a two-pronged program to improve more than 800 of the state’s poorest bridges in five years by Oct. 31, 2014. The 802 bridges were divided into two groups: 248 were identified for rehabilitation (typically, a new deck on existing substructure) by MoDOT and 554 were completely replaced by KTU Constructors. KTU committed to complete their portion by Dec. 31, 2013, and they are ahead of that schedule by 14 months. The total cost of the entire program was $685 million.
A few key facts about this program include:
- KTU Constructors used 22 Missouri-based subcontractors and more than 100 other materials suppliers and subcontractors to deliver the project.
- Average bridge closure was about 42 days – nearly half of what a normal MoDOT bridge project would take. However, the fastest single-span bridge was completed in only eight days.
- Under the design-build contract, KTU Constructors recycled 9,000 tons of steel and 148,000 tons of concrete.
- Since the first bridge was completed, MoDOT reopened a new bridge every 1.5 days.
- There are 10,405 bridges on the Missouri state highway system – 7th largest nationwide. Approximately 900 of them are in Northwest Missouri.
“Even though we have replaced or improved all these bridges, we still have more bridges in Missouri that need work,” Wichern said. “We’ll continue to inspect, repair and replace bridges when needed, but at our current funding level, we will be doing fewer of those projects.”
For a complete list of bridges included in the Safe & Sound Program in Northwest Missouri as well as before and after photos, visit www.modot.mo.gov/northwest/safeandsound/index2.htm.
For more information about this and other MoDOT projects, call 1-888-ASK-MODOT (888-275-6636) or visit www.modot.org/northwest and view the online Traveler Information Map. In addition, MoDOT provides updated information on Twitter @MoDOTNorthwest and Facebook at www.facebook.com/MoDOTNWDistrict.