Bridge work will slow I-44 traffic for months near Mt. Vernon

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MOUNT VERNON, Mo. - Drivers on Interstate 44 near Mt. Vernon will experience traffic delays in both directions until late in the summer, starting in early February. Contract crews will rehabilitate the eastbound I-44 bridge over the Spring River at mile marker 43.4.

Nearly 30,000 vehicles a day travel over the bridge, which was built in 1964. It has significant deterioration that requires frequent maintenance.

Contractor crews will begin the project by placing message boards, replacing guardrail and signing a detour along Missouri 96 between Missouri 39 and Missouri 97 for westbound traffic and a detour on the outer road beginning at Exit 38 for eastbound traffic.

Traffic impacts:
• Drivers should expect lane closings in the westbound lanes beginning week of Feb. 6.
• Beginning the week of March 13, temporary crossovers will be constructed to move two-way traffic into the westbound lanes of I-44.
• Eastbound bridge will CLOSE after March 15 for the duration of the project.
• Motorists can expect significant traffic delays and a reduced speed limit of 60 mph in the work zone.
• MoDOT urges drivers to seek alternate routes around the construction.
• Some work may occur on weekends.
Weather and/or construction delays will alter the work schedule.

Project information:
• Contractor: Emery Sapp & Sons, Inc., Columbia
• Total cost: $3.4 million
• Completion date: August 31, 2017