In just two weeks, after months of preparation, the Missouri Department of Transportation will begin the Blanchette Bridge westbound closure and detour. But before that takes place, prep work still need to be done.
This weekend MoDOT will close three lanes on the eastbound side of the bridge. The closures will begin at 8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 19 and run until 5 a.m. Sunday, Oct. 21. With the three lanes closed, at least two eastbound lanes will remain open throughout the weekend.
The lanes aren't the only things that will be shut down. For safety reasons, ramps from northbound and southbound Fifth Street to eastbound Interstate 70 will also be closed from 8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 19 until 8 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 20. MoDOT is encouraging motorists to take Veterans Memorial Drive to Route 94 to access eastbound I-70.
Crews will be restriping the eastbound I-70 bridge to six lanes in preparation for the bridge to handle both directions of I-70 traffic starting Nov. 2.
MoDOT will have the normal five lanes of eastbound I-70 will be open to traffic before the morning rush on Monday, Oct. 22.
The bridge will remain closed for less than a year. The eastbound I-70 bridge will be used to carry three lanes of traffic in each direction. Immediately off the end of the bridge there will be pavement in the median to move the three westbound lanes back over to the normal westbound pavement.
MoDOT is advising drivers to use alternate routes to eastbound I-70 this weekend during the lane closures. Route 370 and Route 364 provide nearby alternate Missouri River bridge crossings. MoDOT asks motorists to slow down and watch for workers present in work zones.