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Friday, November 06, 2009

Interstate 64/Highway 40 to open early

Good news is ahead for cyclists who travel along the Interstate 64/Highway 40 corridor -- and for the thousands of motorized commuters who use the road. The Missouri Department of Transportation announced today that the highway will reopen Dec. 7 -- 24 days ahead of schedule!

Last year, MoDOT allowed bicyclists and pedestrians on the rebuilt stretch of the Highway between Interstates 170 and 270 the day before it open, and MoDOT is planning a similar event for Dec. 6. Last year's event was conducted by the St. Louis Regional Bicycle Federation, but MoDOT is going on its own this time.

From noon to 4 p.m. Dec. 6, bicyclists will be allowed on the eastbound lanes of the highway between Kingshighway and Hanley Road. You better enjoy it while you can; once the highway reopens to motorized traffic, bicycles won't be allowed on the road.

Big Shark Bicycle Co. is sponsoring a cycling time trial race on the highway from 7:30 to 10 a.m. that day, and you can sign up for the time trial through Big Shark.

The new section of the highway will be dedicated at 3 p.m. near the Tamm Avenue overpass. No doubt the highlight of the ceremony will be designation of  I-64/Highway 40 between McCausland and downtown St. Louis as the Jack Buck Memorial Highway as MoDOT honors the legendary St. Louis Cardinals broadcaster, who died in 2002.

In a related item, cyclists who regularly ride Clayton Road in the city of Frontenac may want to have their voices heard in a meeting at 7 p.m. Thursday at the Frontenac City Hall about the future of the road.

Because of the I-64/Highway 40 construction, a two-lane road with wide shoulders used by cyclists became a three-lane road with a center-turn lane to accommodate additional vehicles on the road. The city is considering whether to keep the center-turn lane or go back to the original striping. If you have questions, you may call City Administrator Bob Shelton at 314-994-3200 or e-mail your comments to lross@cityoffrontenac.org before Thursday.

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