Ask the Road Crew

Traffic troubles could crop up tonight with the Blues and Cardinals both playing home games. Ask MoDOT, St. Louis and St. Louis County experts about the best routes, or any of your commuting questions. Join them at 1 p.m. for the weekly Road Crew chat.

  • The traffic on westbound Choteau between Grand and Compton at 7:45 this morning was horrendous. I have never seen it backed up like this before. Was this the result of some anomaly or is there a detour now that I should be aware of? It seems like I have trouble with traffic no matter which route I take. Do I understand correctly that the Grand overpass will be shut down? If that is the case, when is it happening? Traffic is already a nightmare on Vandeventer because of the Kingshighway detour, add in the congestion of cars trying to get on I-44 westbound and traffic is a snarled mess. Why can't these things be spread out more? I can't imagine what the traffic will be like tonight going downtown. Yesterday I-44 was a disaster at 5:30 going toward downtown and there WASN'T a hockey or baseball game. I'm thinking people better leave now if they want to arrive on time.
  • The congestion along Choteau is probably drivers detouring around the lane closure on the ramp from I-44 to I-55. The city also has repairs on the Compton bridge which may be driving traffic to Chouteau. The lane on the ramp will remain closed until the middle of next month, but we have other ramps scheduled for work. We will monitor Chouteau and see if we can make any adjustments to the signal timing. We do have construction scheduled for Grand this year, however, it will not be a full closure. We will maintain two lanes open during the project, and will be able to keep traffic turning from the interstate in both directions onto Grand for much of the project. We have a lot of work scheduled for I-44 over the next several years – mostly on the bridges. For instance, we have work scheduled on 12 bridges along I-44 this year. We try to combine projects where they make sense, or where one project will meter traffic for another project along the corridor. If we did one project at a time, we would be impacting traffic like this for many years. By doing several projects at the same time, we can limit the overall impact and get all the projects done quicker. That being said, we have significant work scheduled on I-44 through 2018. There are several options to avoid the work -- we understand that not everyone can adjust their commute time, but we always encourage those who can to do so. Andrew Gates, MoDOT Communications
  • Lately, eastbound I-44 seems to be much more heavily congested / slow between 6:30 - 7:00 AM and between 141 and I-270. Is there any particular reason for that or is it just the time of year that people want to get to work early? (so we can get out early and enjoy the weather!)
  • The most likely explanation is that it is the time of year that the sun is at the right spot to be in driver's eyes heading eastbound -- at least in that area. We do have lane closures further in the city, but the traffic shouldn't be backed up between Route 141 and I-270 because of that. Andrew Gates, MoDOT Communications
  • Would STL city be ready in the event that a certain parade would happen to come down Clark in early June? I'm specifically not naming it to prevent any jinxes....
  • With the history of parades in our town, we are more than ready in the event another should occur!
  • The signal at Lafayette is not in sync with the signal at Interstate 44. This is a major concern during evening rush hour heading south on Jefferson avenue. Causing huge traffic jams. Please sync the signals.
  • City staff have been working on Jefferson with MoDOT engineers to properly sync the signals by time of day. We will have staff on-street this evening at that location to investigate your issue.
  • FYI: The Compton bridge, between Spruce and Chouteau, is completely shut down to traffic until April 26 for bridge deck repairs.
  • Can the lights on Chippewa/Watson going westbound in the evening rush hour be looked at? It's frustrating to get stopped at Jamieson, then the light at the shopping center where Value City is, then the light at MacKenzie, and THEN the light at the end of the shopping center. It makes no sense...westbound during rush hour should run more smoothly. I'm not sure why the two shopping centers get preferential treatment over a busy street like Chippewa and Watson. Everyone knows not to speed because of the police along that route.
  • That traffic signal at Shop 'n Save is antiquated equipment that we are already planning on upgrading in order to link it to the signal system currently online that includes Chippewa & Jamieson. Until that time we will continue to the best of our abilities to better manually sync it to the system further east.
  • We're on the cusp of the final phase of construction on our Brentwood Boulevard improvement project. Our contractor will soon begin milling (i.e., "grinding up") the existing pavement - after which new pavement will be put down. The section of Brentwood you mention is included in our project, and will have new pavement and new striping. The project spans Brentwood Blvd. from just north of Marshall north across Manchester all the way to Eager. St. Louis County also maintains two stretches of Eager Road between Brentwood and Hanley; these sections will also be improved as part of this work. David Wrone, St. Louis County.
  • The left turn lines on Brentwood at Eager and I64 are in desperate need of repainting. On a similar note, which may take care of my previous question, isn't Brentwood Blvd and Eager Rd. scheduled for a much needed repave this year?
  • When will the MoDOT 5 year 2017-2021 plan be out for public comment? And what is the general theme of the plan?
  • We expect the TIP to be out for comment in May. Generally speaking, the TIP continues to take care of the existing system. Andrew Gates, MoDOT Communications
  • Martha -- On the Lindbergh at Chaminade concern, what time did you see the problem with the signal there? Andrew Gates, MoDOT Communications
  • This is in response to the second part of "Martha's' query: I have forwarded the U-Turn issue to the St. Louis County Police Department (which patrols Barrett Station Road). I have also asked our Traffic Studies group to investigate the possibility of installing the signage you requested. David Wrone, St. Louis County
  • I have two St. Louis County questions.

    First, the treadle light at Lindbergh and Chaminade is now absurdly long. I'm sure there are times (during morning and afternoon pickup/delivery) when the Chaminade side needs a little longer - but one car will set it off and it will stay red while traffic piles up on Lindbergh. Can that be fixed?

    Second, there's a real problem with illegal U-turns at Barrett Station Road and Barrett Parkway, just south of Manchester. In the absence of a "No U-Turns" sign, drivers apparently feel it's okay, but I've had a couple of recent near-misses from U-turners. May we have a sign (and some enforcement), please?

    Thanks!
  • Back to Chouteau. Please check the light signal at Grand/Chouteau as there are times at afternoon rush hour, recently just yesterday, in which there was NO GREEN light for west bound traffic. The large traffic (due to the unnecessary bike lane and median turn lane additions) had to wait for another light cycle before getting a green light. Turning onto Chouteau from SLU med campus has become a huge frustration. Please change the signal and look into returning 2 lanes for drivers. Where are the bikers?
  • We'll take a look at the signal at Grand and Chouteau to see if there are problems. You can report issues such at that to our customer service team at any time at 275-1500. There are no plans to change the roadway configuration on Chouteau. The current striping was established for overall safety on the roadway for all users (vehicles, pedestrians, transit and cyclists). We have heard from a number of cyclists who have used the roadway – just because you don’t see them during your morning or evening commute doesn’t mean they aren’t using it. Andrew Gates, MoDOT Communications
  • It's much too long. I can make a left turn from Ladue onto Lindbergh and see a red light at Chaminade - and when I get there, it's STILL red. The timings are all for the morning and afternoon rush, but they don't vary. Traffic on Lindbergh backs up on Sunday mornings while one car moseys through.
  • (Sorry - I think I misread your question. The lights are the same length ALL the time, no matter when I go through there - 7:45 AM Sunday or 6:45 PM on Thursday - and there's usually no reason for it.)
  • Thanks -- we 've passed it along to our signal team. Andrew Gates, MoDOT Communications
  • I'm not sure if you answered Martha's question regarding the Lindbergh at Chaminade concern ... it doesn't matter what time of the day it is. It happens on the happens in the evenings and on weekends in both directions.
  • Thanks -- I've asked our signal team to look at it -- it sounds like there might be a detection issue. Andrew Gates, MoDOT Communciations
  • Why doesn't MoDOT just shut down I-44 and put us all out of our misery?
  • There is a lot of work scheduled over the next several years for I-44 -- the corridor is about 50 years old and many of the bridges are due for preventative maintenance to ensure they remain safe and operational. Our goal is to keep as much of the roadway open as we can, yet still complete this necessary maintenance along the corridor. One lane is closed (of four) from the city limits to Kingshighway, and one lane (of two) is closed on the ramp I-55. We understand that the work has an impact on traffic especially during morning rush periods. Drivers can consider one of the many alternate routes into St. Louis City. We encourage those who can shift their commute out of rush period or who can take alternate transportation (such as Metro) to do so. Andrew Gates, MoDOT Communications
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