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Dunklin-Lafayette intersection to reopen this week

Dunklin-Lafayette intersection to reopen this week

August 12th, 2014 in News

Mike Engelbrecht, near, and Brent Johnson from JC Industries build concrete forms for new sidewalk to be poured along Lafayette Street.

Photo by Julie Smith

After more than two months, the Dunklin and Lafayette intersection is expected to reopen by the end of this week.

Dunklin Street, between Chestnut and Marshall streets, and Lafayette Street, between Elm and Roland streets, have been closed since early June as the city began reconstructing the intersection ahead of the Lafayette Street interchange project.

The city/county project is nearly finished and expected to be reopened by the end of Friday, though City Engineer David Bange said the intersection will operate as a four-way stop until signal poles arrive to be installed.

As of Monday afternoon, Bange said the only things that still need to be done are the sidewalks and ramps at the intersection, and the sidewalk and driveways on the southern leg of Lafayette Street. Bange said crosswalk striping should be finished by the end of the week.

The crosswalk striping and the traffic signals will be specially painted to match the colors of Lincoln University.

"The crosswalks will be a thermo plastic material which is made to look like a herringbone brick pattern," Bange said.

The brick pattern will be blue, while the grout lines will be white. The traffic signal poles also will be blue.

"It should make for a very vibrant entrance to LU," Bange said.

The intersection reconstruction was done by JC Industries, who came in with a bid of $1,087,707.

Of that, $788,082 is for street and signal work and will be split between the county and city's half-cent sales taxes.

The remaining $299,624 is for sewer improvement work done in the area and paid for by the city.

Bange said the sewer line, which is being installed across Lafayette Street near Soldiers Hall, is expected to be completed by the end of the week as well.

The intersection improvements are meant to help handle added detour traffic when construction begins on the new Lafayette Street interchange with the U.S. 50-63 Expressway, which is expected to cost $18 million and be funded through MoDOT.

The project calls for a new interchange at U.S. 50 and Lafayette Street, and adding a lane in each direction from Monroe Street to Lafayette Street and from Lafayette to Clark Avenue.