JOPLIN, Mo. – The bridge on S. Range Line Road opens to traffic ahead of schedule.
According to MoDOT, the new bridge (Business Loop 49) over the Kansas City Southern Railroad is now open to traffic. They say it’s more than one month ahead of schedule.
This bridge is included in Gov. Mike Parson’s $351 million Focus on Bridges program, which will repair or replace 250 bridges across the state.
“The contractor, Hartman & Company, Inc. of Springfield, worked hard to get this bridge open several weeks ahead of schedule and in time for the Christmas shopping season,” said Southwest District Engineer Steve Campbell.
The original bridge, built in 1976, closed in early September for demolition. Contractor crews replaced the old bridge with a new structure that is two (2) feet higher and 15 feet wider than the one it replaced. The contractor also built new sidewalks on either side of the bridge.
“We want to thank drivers, area businesses and our partners at the City of Joplin for their patience and understanding while we worked to replace this important bridge in a busy part of Joplin’s commercial district,” Campbell said.
MoDOT says about 24,580 vehicles cross the bridge daily.
The total cost of the project was $6.2 million.
MoDOT says in coming years, they will also replace bridges on North Main Street (Missouri Route 43) over the Kansas City Southern Railroad and Turkey Creek along with building a new bridge over the Kansas City Southern Railroad on 32nd Street (Route FF).