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Update provided on NW MO highway flood repair

(KLZA)-- Missouri Department of Transportation workers continue the process to restore highways in Northwest, Missouri damaged by flooding as the waters recede.

The work includes clearing debris and repairing shoulders and minor road surface issues as they are able. The more extensive work included removal of hazardous storage tanks, significant roadway and shoulder repairs and bridge reconstruction. The extensive work is contracted out to companies through a bidding process.

Of major concern to many area residents are U.S. Route 136 in Atchison County including the Missouri River Crossing at Brownville and U.S. Route 159 in Holt County including the Missouri River crossing at Rulo.

The latest update from MoDOT says the contractor has started preliminary work ahead of schedule to the Highway 136 roadway between the bridge near Phelps City and the Missouri River where the water has receded. There are multiple areas where the roadway has washed away. Rock will be placed in these areas and asphalt will be poured where water is no longer over the road. A completion date and road opening date is not known.

The status of the bridge and any damage near Phelps City is unknown. Currently water is too high and the current too strong for divers to inspect the underwater structures. The railroad has placed a temporary bridge over the highway bridge, but the temporary bridge does not sit on , nor rely on the highway bridge structure underneath. It is not open to the public.

The Missouri River bridge at Brownville has no apparent damage although inspections are scheduled to be performed.

In Holt County a contractor is making repairs to the roadway between Route 111 and the Missouri River. They are finishing up asphalt work at the present time and plan a mid-August reopening of the roadway between the Missouri River and Route 111.

Due to the damage of the Little Tarkio Creek Bridge near Fortescue, once U.S. Route 159 is reopened a signed detour route will be in place to allow traffic between Nebraska and Interstate 29. The detour will be east on U.S. 159 across the Rulo bridge to Route 111, north no Route 111 to Route 118 then east on Route 118 to I-29.

The bridge over the Little Tarkio Creek near Fortescue on U.S. 159 is a complete loss and will need to be replaced. Emery Sapp & Sons Inc. has been awarded a contract in excess of $2.5-million to do the project. Work is scheduled to begin August 19 and should be completed by December 1.

The Penny Slough Bridge east of Fortescue is part of the Statewide Transportation Improvement Program and work is scheduled to begin immediately after Labor Day. The bid was in excess of $2.2-million.

Traffic will use the same detour previously mentioned. The project also includes a bridge deck replacement of the I-29 overpass on U.S. 159, which will begin after October 1.

In addition, in Holt County, a large slide occurred on Route T. The slide is more involved than originally thought and the roadway had to be closed. The severity of the slide must be determined, and a solution implemented before the road can be reopened for the safety of motorists. MoDOT is working with consultants to complete the analysis and develop plans for a repair project that is scheduled for March, 2020.


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