Ask the Road Crew

Ask the Road Crew

We're going to fall back this weekend and that could change your commuting habits. Get ready for any changes and ask our Road Crew your questions.

    When will the Grand Bridge over 44 be completed? Just curious if there will be a BRIEF time when 44 will be free of construction before the next round that you've mentioned in this chat. (I'm mainly talking about in the city between Jefferson and Hampton.) Thank you!
    Grand will be completely open to traffic before December 1st of this year. We have a closure scheduled on Grand for Saturday between 6 a.m. and about 2 p.m. to remove barrier wall and put down new stripes. When we reopen Grand on Saturday, drivers will have two northbound lanes and two southbound lanes in their final position, as well as the bicycle lanes. We still have some work on the median to do, so drivers still won't be able to make the left turn from NB Grand to WB I-44, nor the left turn from SB Grand to EB I-44. So, during the winter, I-44 should be fairly clear this year. Next year, most of our work on I-44 is between Murdoch and the River des Peres, and around the PSB. We do have some wrap-up work on Grand (landscaping and the like) that is finished in the spring. Andrew Gates, MoDOT Communications
    Thank you Andrew! You just made my day. This is for the city, but is the Kingshighway bridge still scheduled to open in December?
    The Kingshighway bridge is still scheduled to be open to traffic by end of December!
    Thanks for hosting these chats. This question is for the City. What is the timeframe for the completion of the construction on 4th street downtown? Yesterday at lunch time, traffic was backed up from Pine to Washington. Also, when will the construction on Locust between Broadway and 10th be completed?
    Ameren is working on 4th Street (Olive to Convention) downtown and their work is on track to be completed by end of year. There are various efforts by Ameren underway on Locust that should be completed within 8 weeks.
    Baxter Road, between Clarkson and Wild Horse Creek Road in Chesterfield, will soon be striped for dedicated bike lanes (one lane in each direction).

    This modification is supported by St. Louis County’s Complete Streets ordinance, which was passed in 2014 and requires the Department of Transportation to consider all modes of transportation – including bicycles – when designing a roadway project.

    A St. Louis County contractor currently is completing the final phase of a $1.5 million improvement project on this portion of Baxter Road. Work includes the replacement of deteriorated curbs and sidewalks, construction of wheelchair-accessible sidewalk ramps and replacement of much of the road’s existing pavement.

    “Not every road is a candidate for bike lanes, and we review each project individually and systematically,” explained Dr. Nichalos Gardner, director of the departments of Transportation and Public Works. “But Baxter Road proved to be an ideal candidate for them.”

    Currently, this 1.6-mile long section of Baxter Road consists of two driving lanes in each direction, and a shared center ‘left turn’ lane. Once the bike lanes are striped, motor vehicles will have one lane in each direction and a shared center lane.

    Officials emphasized that the reduction of driving lanes will not significantly impact traffic flow – a determination based on an analysis of existing traffic volume, peak traffic flow and the use of computer models to project the impact of reduced lanes on traffic movement.

    “We studied this very thoroughly,” Dr. Gardner continued. “And our computer models project very little, if any, of an adverse effect on traffic movement.”

    St. Louis County has previously reduced the number of motor vehicle lanes to provide bicycle lanes on the following roads: Adams/Lockwood, between Woodlawn Avenue and Berry Road; Banshee Road, between Missouri Bottom Road and James S. McDonnell Boulevard, and Woodson Road, between Trenton Avenue and Pennell Drive.

    Baxter Road’s new bike lanes will help expand connections to an existing bicycle network that includes bike lanes on Clarkson Road, Wild Horse Creek Road and Edison Avenue. DAVID WRONE, ST. LOUIS COUNTY
    I just found out that there has been correspondence between the City of Chesterfield and St. Louis Co0unty where they are considering making Baxter Road between Wild Horse and Clarkson have fewer lanes and add biking lanes. I find this totally unreasonable as well as unnecessary. Does the public have any say in this and why has there not been any notification to residents as well as people who use this road? Have studies been made on the number of people driving on this roadway? Hopefully not taken while the "construction" is underway since many are avoiding this road because of inferior conditions.
    When is the bridge on highway 79 at Elsberry going to be open?
    The bridge at Guinns Creek on Route 79 has reopened. However, contractors are currently working on New Bryant Creek (just south of Guinns Creek.) That project is scheduled to be completed before the end of the year. Andrew Gates, MoDOT Communications
    I have a question for the city. Why is that i put in a concern/complaint to your agency and i do not hear back from anyone in the streets department. It's very difficult to have trust in this department if no one seems to care to answer concerns sent in to the your department. Why does it take so long for citizens to get a call back.
    I'm not sure if you've already done so, but I would encourage you to fill out an online request/comment form at . This process provides a formalized documentation of your comment with tracking on the response by City staff. If you have done this already, please provide me with contact information to discuss your comment in detail so that I may search out the appropriate responder on our end. I apologize for any delays in responding to you.
    Something for the state about Manchester in the city...going EB at Sulphur, there's a LED no right turn sign that illuminates when a train comes, but it's nearly totally burnt out at the Sulphur intersection. Also, there's a signal for the St. Louis Marketplace "mall" between Waldemar and Knox (there's no street sign) that is uber sensitive to traffic coming out of the mall, aka as soon as a car comes to the stop line or the right turn yield lane, the light immediately cycles. Is there a way to delay that action, especially for the right turns since it's a yield? As in, the right turner may have to wait a couple seconds for traffic to clear, but can then turn when there's a safe movement, as opposed to stopping traffic in all directions and then the call to cycle the light is canceled because the right turner has made his/her turn.
    I've passed your concerns about both the sign at the train crossing and the timing for the "mall" to our traffic engineer for the city. We'll check into those. Andrew Gates, MoDOT Communications
    Our Baxter Road contractor is in fact behind schedule. Work was originally scheduled to be finished by the end of October. However, nothing is 'seriously wrong." We'll assess daily liquidated damages on the contractor until the project is complete - with the eventual total and any unfinished work guaranteed by a performance bond that the contractor was required to obtain prior to the start of work. (This is standard operating procedure for all of our projects.) In regard to the theoretically defective sub-base, as with all of our projects, the Department of Transportation assigned a resident engineer to our Baxter Road improvement project. This individual is responsible for overseeing all phases of work, and would certainly identify sub-standard work and require its correction. Re: our bid awarding process: As a rule, our contractors are the lowest bidders on a particular job. David Wrone, St. Louis County
    As you reported last week construction on Baxter Road between Clarkson and Wild Horse Creek is behind schedule and the contractor now has daily penalties. Construction cones have been pulled back off the road and sit on the side. Obviously something is seriously wrong. These needed repairs were delayed a year because of financial/bidding issues and now the contractor who began construction in May has drug it out past the deadline. Patching appears to not be complete. If the contractor starts to start with the resurfacing, does the County take pictures of the substructure so that if issues arise because of poor preparation? Are there avenues in place to ensure that contractor is held responsible for his work? Also, if a contractor leaves a project undone, how is the daily penalty collected? Are contractors selected purely on lowest bid or is quality of prior projects taken into account? This particular project on a road that connects commerce, residential areas, and major roadways appears to have been given little serious attention and care by the County and commuters have been shown minimal respect.
    Thank you. I'll forward your report to our Division of Operations. David Wrone, St. Louis County
    Big Bend has many potholes going south, from Dale through Folk. Also, those brick crosswalks on Big Bend have lots many bricks in both directions. Thanks!
    In the past I have asked about the intersection of Lafayette and Mississippi specifically the western leg which connects the NW and SW corners of this intersection. Steve said the crosswalk would be added with the new corners that were laid but this has not been done.
    My previous comment was that the west leg was not determined to be a safe crossing to stripe for pedestrians due to the skew of the intersection. I noted that the new curb ramps and crosswalk striping for the pedestrian access at the other three corners were determined to be safe pathways and as such were constructed that way with cooperation with local Alderman Coatar and the Street Dept. I apology if there was a misunderstanding.
    I am pretty sure I mentioned this a few weeks ago and it's still an issue. Going SB on Grand approaching I-44, there is an orange construction sign that says lanes are shifting to the left but the lanes actually shift to the right. The contractor obviously left the sign up from when the first half of the Grand project. Can this get fixed this time?
    I've passed it to our construction team -- however, by this weekend, it will be a moot point. We are expecting to reopen both the northbound and southbound lanes (as well as the bike lanes) in their final positions. We will have some work in the median, so we will not have the left turns to the interstate available for a bit. Andrew Gates, MoDOT Communications
    I have some questions/comments related to signals in the city:
    1) The L-turn signal for E-bound cars on Chippewa at Hampton is way too short - I was the 4th car in line on Sat and was not able to clear it, merely because one vehicle hesitated for just a bit. It was at least another 4-5 minutes waiting for another turn (I certainly hope the durations on H are going to be shortened when Kingshighway reopens - 3 minutes is a bit much to ask intersecting streets to wait).
    2) The signal at Kingshighway and Sutherland continues to be converted to a regular cycle instead of a "demand" one (even though the Magdalen Center is now closed/for sale - making the change even more pointless). This issue was brought to your attention by myself and others many weeks ago - will it be changing back? If not - why?
    3) Can the late-hour cycles at Gravois/Loughborough be shortened? The light for G is far longer than it needs to be after 10, and the right/through lane for W-bound L always seems to have a through car at the front of a line of numerous other ones wanting to turn right.
    1. What time of day did this occur? There are different timing plans that run each day that change at certain times. The signal completes a whole cycle every 120 -140 seconds, so if you are missed you will not be waiting any longer than that. 2. Sutherland was mentioned previously and it was determined our vehicle detection is malfunctioning. Our new supply of vehicle detection literally just arrived a few minutes ago at the Street Dept. We will be visiting the critical problem areas such as this one to correct operations. 3. Gravois is MoDOT-controlled traffic signal - they will need to answer this.
    I have passed your concern on Gravois onto our traffic team to take a look at and make what adjustments they can to the signal. Andrew Gates, MoDOT Communications
    Thanks for hosting these chats. The I-64 widening west of 270 is looking good and appears to be wrapping up, with the guardrail I asked about last week (EB west of Mason by the newly exposed rock) already installed. Thank you!! This week's question: When is the fencing between the interstate and outer roads scheduled to be replaced? The fences that existed before the project appeared to have done a good job of keeping wildlife off the road.
    We won't be installing fencing on the I-64 project -- it isn't required. Andrew Gates, MoDOT Communications
    How is the bridge work in Jefferson City coming along - also can someone check the signals at 64 and Hampton heading south between 4:30 and 5 when I pass there - exiting traffic to go south on Hampton - we have to wait for about 20 seconds for traffic to clear coming from the park - thank you
    The westbound 54/63 bridge is supposed to open on November 14. I have passed your concerns on to our traffic engineers, however, from your description, it may be people blocking the intersection -- which is an enforcement issue for the PD, not a signal issue. Andrew Gates, MoDOT Communications
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