The Missouri Department of Transportation knows the continued road closures due to flooding and flood damage are impacting lives, including its own workers in these affected areas, and MoDOT is working to repair and restore mobility to routes as waters recede.
Local maintenance crews are clearing debris and repairing shoulders and minor road surface issues as they are able. More extensive work, including debris removal, hazardous storage tank removal, significant roadway and shoulder repairs and bridge reconstruction are being contracted out to companies through a bid process.
While a roadway may look travel-ready, it is imperative that motorists heed all warnings and road closure barricades as there may be underlying issues or work yet to be complete before it is safe. Barricades are in place for your protection.
Below are updates on the progress crews have made on several routes where floodwaters have receded.
U.S. Route 136 in Atchison County, including the Missouri River Crossing to Brownville, NE:
- Roadway between the bridge near Phelps City and the Missouri River –The contractor began preliminary work on August 2, ahead of schedule, where the water has receded. There are multiple areas where the roadway has washed away. The contractor will place rock fill and then asphalt where water is no longer over the road. A completion and road opening date is not known.
- Bridge near Phelps City – The status of the bridge and any damage is unknown. Currently the water is too high and the current too strong for divers to inspect the underwater structures. They revisited the bridge this week, but high, fast water still prevented the inspection. The railroad has placed a temporary bridge over the bridge. The temporary bridge does not sit on, nor rely on, the bridge structure underneath. It is being used and monitored by the railroad. They have allowed Gavalon Grain and utility companies to utilize the bridge as well.
- Brownville Bridge – At this time, no damage is evident to the Brownville Bridge. More inspections are scheduled to be performed.
U.S. Route 159 in Holt County, including the Missouri River Crossing to Rulo, NE:
- Roadway between Route 111 and the Missouri River – Phillips Hardy, Inc. was awarded the contract for repairs to the roadway as part of the April letting. They are finishing up asphalt work now and are planning a mid-August reopening of the roadway between the Missouri River and Route 111. Due to the damage of the Little Tarkio Creek Bridge near Fortescue, once U.S. Route 159 is reopened, a signed detour route will be in place to move traffic between Nebraska and I-29. This detour route will be east on U.S. Route 159 across the Rulo bridge to Route 111, north on Route 111 to Route 118, then east on Route 118 to Interstate 29.
- Little Tarkio Creek Bridge near Fortescue – The bridge is a complete loss and will need to be replaced. The project was part of the June 2019 letting and awarded to Emery Sapp & Sons, Inc. for an amount of $2,531,629.95. The contractor plans to begin work August 19 and should have all work complete by Decemeber 1, 2019.
- Penny Slough Bridge replacement east of Fortescue – The project is part of the state’s Statewide Transportation Improvement Program and was part of the May 2019 letting. A contract in the amount of $2,213,516.42 was awarded to Boone Construction Co. The contractor plans to close the road and begin work immediately after Labor Day. Traffic will utilize the detour noted above over U.S. Route 159, Route 111 and Route 118. (The project includes a bridge deck replacement of the I-29 overpass on U.S. Route 159, which will begin after Oct. 1, 2019.)
Route T in Holt County:
- Roadway – A large slide formed on a section of roadway near Mill Bluff Road. The slide is more involved than originally thought and the roadway had to be closed. While the slide may look like a simple fix, the severity must be determined, and a solution implemented before the road can be reopened for the safety of motorists. Currently, MoDOT is working with consultants to complete a geotechnical analysis and develop plans for a repair project that is scheduled for a March 2020 letting.