Traffic on southbound U.S. 63 over Bonne Femme Creek south of Discovery Parkway near Columbia will be reduced to one lane beginning at 7 p.m. Tuesday to allow for substructure repairs underneath the southbound bridge, according to a Missouri Department of Transportation news release.
Southbound traffic will be down to a single lane until mid-June. MoDOT officials said southbound motorists should expect significant impacts while the bridge is down to one lane.
Traffic modeling indicates during peak travel times, delays will routinely reach 30 minutes or more, with times where backups could be closer to two hours, according to the news release.
The contractor will begin work under the driving lane first. Concrete barriers will be installed across the bridge to divert southbound traffic into the passing lane until repairs underneath are completed. Then the concrete traffic barrier will be reconfigured to place traffic in the driving lane.
Any additional work requiring lane closures when the barrier is not in place will take place during the overnight hours.
The southbound J-turn just north of the bridge will remain open. The access from Tom Bass Road (63 South Outer Road) to U.S. 63 south will be closed during the work.
In addition to the bridge work, a new acceleration lane will be constructed to increase safety for motorists accessing southbound U.S. 63 from the outer road.
The entire project is scheduled to be completed in early July.
"Fortunately, the needed repairs can be completed without totally closing the bridge and rerouting traffic," MoDOT Resident Engineer Aaron Peck said in the news release. "This allows us to limit the impact to southbound traffic only, as opposed to shifting all traffic to the northbound bridge. We hope these repairs will keep the structure in service for many years to come."