Eight counties | 36 cities | one region

a voluntary council of local governments
serving the missouri meramec area.

Transportation Advisory Committee decides regional transportation priorities

For immediate release

For more information, contact

Anne Freand

Highways 63 and 50 remain at top of list 

ST. JAMES — The Meramec Region’s Transportation Advisory Committee (TAC) decided the expansions of Highways 63 and 50 to four-lane corridors remain the number one and two regional transportation priorities, respectively, at its December meeting. The proposed projects on Highway 63 and Highway 50 have topped the regional priority list for several years.

Once it was decided these two projects should continue to be top priorities for the region, TAC members from each county shared the top three or four additional transportation needs from their counties. The TAC then voted to prioritize these additional needs on a regional level. The prioritized list was approved later in evening by the Meramec Regional Planning Commission (MRPC) board and will now be shared with the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) Central District office for consideration of inclusion in MoDOT’s Statewide Transportation Improvement Program (STIP). The STIP is a five-year plan for design and construction projects.

In addition to the projects on Highways 63 and 50, other items topping the TAC’s priority list as high or medium priority, in order of priority, are:

  • Replace bridge over Frene Creek on MO 19 in Gasconade County;
  • Address bridge concerns over Big River on Route C in Washington County;
  • Address safety concerns on bridge over Gladden Creek on MO 19 in Dent County;
  • Safety improvements at the Y intersection of Hwy 63 and Hwy. 28 south of Vienna in Maries County;
  • Replace bridge over Dry Creek on Route HH in Crawford County;
  • Safety improvements at I-44 to University Drive on US 63 in Rolla;
  • Install passing and climbing lanes on US 63 in Osage County;
  • Safety improvements at intersection of Hwy. 63 and Route E in Osage County;
  • Safety improvements at Exit 159 on ramp on at I-44 in St. Robert;
  • Add dual left turn lane on Missouri Avenue southbound to Eastlawn in St. Robert;
  • Address safety and flooding concerns on Route 89 near the Gasconade River through Osage County;
  • Safety improvements and turn lane on US 63 through Westphalia;
  • Improve interchange at US 63 and I-44 in Rolla; and
  • Add southbound turn lanes on US 63 to Hwy. 28 near Vichy.

The priority list is an annual planning exercise for the TAC.

Additionally, the TAC prioritized spot projects on Hwy. 63 that MoDOT has identified as projects that would significantly improve the flow of traffic. The projects ranked from highest to lowest were:

  • Build a northbound passing lane north of Vienna starting approximately 0.5 miles north of Route AA and extending 2.4 miles in Maries County;
  • Build a northbound passing lane starting at Route 28 near Vichy and extending for 3.3 miles in Maries County. This includes turn lanes at Route 28 on Hwy. 63; 
  • Build a northbound passing lane north of Freeburg starting at Route JJ and extending for 1.7 miles. This would include a southbound left turn lane at Route JJ in Osage County;
  • Build a southbound passing lane south of Freeburg starting approximately at city limits and extending for 2.2 miles in Osage County;
  • Extend the southbound climbing lane south of Westphalia to Route T in Osage County;
  • Build a two-way left turn lane from County Road 511 to Mill Street in Westphalia;
  • Rebuild the Hwy. 63 and Route E intersection in Osage County; and 
  • Extend the southbound climbing lane at Route A to go around the corner ending at the straightaway in Maries County. 

MoDOT representatives reported to the TAC that six Traffic Engineering Assistance Program (TEAP) projects from the Central District were funded. Five cities submitted applications from the Meramec Region and these were reviewed and ranked at the October TAC meeting. Four of the six Central District projects funded were in the Meramec Region and will focus on ADA evaluation plans for the cities of St. Robert, Salem, Hermann and St. James. The two additional projects out of region were for Fulton and Lebanon. 

James Beattie was, also, introduced as the new MoDOT project manager for the region. 

Persons needing more information on MRPC’s Transportation Advisory Committee may contact MRPC at (573) 265-2993. For more information on Transportation needs in the region or other programs offered by MRPC, follow them on Facebook at www.facebook.com/meramecregion or visit www.meramecregion.org

Formed in 1969, MRPC is a voluntary council of governments serving Crawford, Dent, Gasconade, Maries, Osage, Phelps, Pulaski and Washington counties and their respective cities. Gasconade County Presiding Commissioner Larry Miskel serves as chairman of the board. A professional staff of 27 offers technical assistance and services, such as grant preparation and administration, housing assistance, transportation planning, environmental planning, ordinance codification, business loans and other services to member communities.

To keep up with the latest MRPC news and events, visit the MRPC website at www.meramecregion.org or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/meramecregion/.