Contractor team chosen for new Boone bridge
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Contractor team chosen for new Boone bridge

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Contractor team chosen for new Boone bridge span

WALSH-ALBERICI PHOTO This rendering shows the planned eastbound span of the Daniel Boone Bridge on the upstream side of the existing eastbound span, which would become westbound after the new bridge opens. The new span is on the right in this view of the bridge from St. Charles County looking toward St. Louis County.

A new eastbound span of the Daniel Boone Bridge over the Missouri River is expected to be under construction early next year and open to traffic by Nov. 15, 2014.

A project time line indicates construction could begin next February, but a start date has not been set, said Linda Wilson Horn, a Missouri Department of Transportation spokeswoman.

The Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission on July 10 selected a team of Walsh Construction Co. of Chicago and J.S. Alberici Construction Co. Inc. of St. Louis to be the design-build contractor for the new bridge and related work. The lead design firm is Burns & McDonnell Inc.

The commission hired Walsh earlier this year to renovate the westbound span of the Blanchette Memorial Bridge at St. Charles, a project slated to begin in November.

The two existing spans of the Daniel Boone Bridge together carry about 100,000 vehicles per day on I-64/Highway 40 between Weldon Spring and Chesterfield.

The $125 million project also includes removing the deteriorated westbound span built in 1935; improvements to the existing eastbound span, which opened in 1989; a new Chesterfield Airport Road interchange, including connecting the North Outer Road to the westbound Interstate 64 on-ramp; and building a continuous westbound fourth lane from the Chesterfield Airport Road entrance ramp to the Highway 94 exit ramp.

That will provide eight lanes — four in each direction — for three miles between Chesterfield Airport Road and Highway 94.

The project also will add a 'shared use path" on the new span connecting the Katy Trail in St. Charles County to the Monarch Levee Trail in St. Louis County.

The new bridge, to be built upstream of the current eastbound span, will have four 12-foot lanes with left and right shoulders. The existing eastbound span also has four lanes, but the old westbound structure has three 10-foot lanes.

After the new span opens, westbound traffic will shift to the current eastbound structure and the old westbound bridge will be demolished. The schedule calls for all traffic to be in final position by Oct. 2, 2015, and completion of the contract by the end of 2015.

Walsh-Alberici's low bid of $110.9 million is about $6 million less than MoDOT expected to spend for the new bridge and offered completion sooner than expected.

"They also looked at our most recent inspection report and came up with a whole list of things that need to be done" on the existing eastbound bridge, including pavement overlay and some repainting, Wilson Horn said.

"Their proposal provides the most improvements coming in under budget with a delivery much faster than we had anticipated," MoDOT Director Kevin Keith said in a news release.

Because the old westbound span will remain in use during construction, Keith said the impact on traffic during construction would be "very minimal." The Walsh-Alberici construction schedule maintains all lanes during peak hours with minimal weekend closures, according to MoDOT's news release.

MoDOT also said the project website — www.modot.org/boonebridge — allows the public to sign up for regular e-updates regarding the construction schedule.

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