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MoDOT Plans Second Blanchette Bridge Blast for Dec. 4

Interstate 70 at the bridge will be closed for one hour for safety.

More closures are coming next week to the Blanchette Bridge. 

Weather permitting, portions of Interstate 70 over the Missouri River will close Tuesday, Dec. 4. The closure is expected to be for one hour. Missouri Department of Transportation crews will be blasting the remaining two sections of the steel truss on the closed westbound I-70 Blanchette Bridge. Sections of the bridge were blown up earlier in November. 

Road crews will close one lane of I-70 in both directions at 9 a.m. An hour later, at 10 a.m., all eastbound I-70 traffic will be detoured off the highway at Route 94 and directed to Route 364 where they can proceed eastbound on Route 364 to Interstate 270 and back north to I-70.

Westbound traffic will be detoured off the highway at Interstate 270. Drivers will be directed to Route 370 where they can head west on Route 370 to get back to I-70. 

Police will block the other access points to the closed section of I-70 at the Route 94, Fifth Street and Earth City Expressway/Route 141 interchanges. 

MoDOT is strongly advising motorists to avoid I-70 between 9 a.m. and 11 a.m.

Once the area is secured after 10 a.m., MoDOT will blast and bridge and pieces will be dropped into the river below. The blast is scheduled for 10:15 a.m. After the explosion, MoDOT crews will the eastbound section of the bridge to clear any debris before the highway can be reopened.

It is expected this process will take approximately one hour.

If there is inclement weather, the blasting will be postponed until the next dry day.

This blast will be visible from the St. Charles riverfront for public viewing. The blast will only lasts a moment, but it will drop more than 1,000 feet of truss, including 4.5 million pounds of steel into the Missouri River. The area immediately adjacent to the bridge including Bangert Island Conservation Area and parts of the Riverwoods Trail will be closed for safety.

Jane November 30, 2012 at 04:05 PM
If you could, please ask if the Riverwoods Trail will be closed at the same place as before, or if more of it will be closed. Now....take the kids out of school? Hmmm.
William Braudis November 30, 2012 at 06:22 PM
This should be totally unacceptable to Missouri Tax Payers. In the United States, it is impossible to build anything to last. A steel structure that can not withstand 60 years of wear without needing to be totally destroyed is insane. MoDot chooses not to maintain any of their projects and are just amazed that rust and decay has destroyed the bridge so badly that it must now be blown up and replaced to the tune of 60 million dollars. ( wish to guess what the really cost will end up ? how about 85 million dollars plus under-the-table costs )
Linda Wilson Horn November 30, 2012 at 08:33 PM
The Riverwoods Trail will be closed approximately 2,000 feet from the trail to ensure people are outside the blasting zone. This is about the same spot it was closed last time.
Linda Wilson Horn November 30, 2012 at 08:34 PM
All major review bridges are designed to last 100 years with a major rehabilitation at approximately 50 years. We are not completely destroying the bridge right now. We are removing and replacing the concrete driving surface and barrier wall and the steel truss and some other steel members. The piers in the river will remain in place. This major rehab will then enable the bridge to last another 50-75 years before it will be time for a complete replacement including the river piers.
William Braudis November 30, 2012 at 10:54 PM
It is very difficult, yet expected, that anyone could blow up a bridge and discard it into the Missouri River then call it Rehab. In Prague, the Rotunda at Saint Martin's Church is still standing although it is over 900 years old and is made from brick and mortar and yes, receives maintenance.
Holly Locke December 04, 2012 at 01:16 PM
Is this rain enough to postpone the blast today?
Linda Wilson Horn December 04, 2012 at 02:03 PM
We are still good to go this morning. The rain has stopped and the clouds are starting to clear!
Joe Barker December 04, 2012 at 02:09 PM
Thanks for the response, Linda!
Joe Koncz December 04, 2012 at 09:26 PM
I won't be there to watch but have fond memories of being stalled on that bridge while traffic was backed up to the Airport! Many of times I wondered if I would make it hope to go to the bathroom on time! Ah the memories!

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