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With 3 bridges built, 2017 a good year for Gasconade County

Posted on Tuesday, November 28, 2017 at 1:48 pm

State Rep. Justin Alferman of Hermann examines a chunk of concrete that has broken off the bridge over First Creek on Highway J.

While some of the more-pressing road-and-bridge projects in Gasconade County did not receive attention last year, by all accounts 2017 still was a good year for local government officials — considering that three bridges were replaced.
Taken off the list last week of the county’s main transportation needs were spans over Little Berger Creek, Second Creek and Dry Fork Creek.
MoDOT last year replaced the Highway 100 East bridge over Little Berger Creek about 4 miles outside Hermann; the Highway EE bridge over Dry Fork Creek; and the Highway 19 bridge over Second Creek leading in and out of Owensville. These projects earlier had been programmed into the state’s on-going 5-Year Transportation Improvement Plan (TIP) and funding was available for them.
Those three projects were not replaced last week when the Gasconade County Commission met with MoDOT and Meramec Regional Planning Commission (MRPC) representatives to craft the county’s 2017 list of projects. That means the regional planning agency’s Transportation Advisory Committee (TAC) will have a slightly shorter list of projects offered by Gasconade County.
On Dec. 14, the TAC will take the Gasconade County list and the lists from the seven other counties in the Meramec Region and distill all the projects into a regional master list.
How many Gasconade County projects — or if any — make it onto the regional list will depend in large part on how successfully the county’s three members on the TAC make the case for some of the local projects.
The regional list then will be considered by the MRPC board. The version of the regional list approved by the MRPC board will be forwarded to MoDOT for consideration for the next version of the state’s TIP.
Here are the projects on this year’s Gasconade County list of projects. The first four projects are deemed “priority” projects and are listed in descending order:
• 1. Improvements to Highway 19 as it runs along the Gasconade County R-2 School District campuses to Industrial Drive.
• 2. A realignment of the intersection of Highway 100 West and Highway J about six miles southwest of Hermann.
• 3. Replacement of the Highway J bridge over First Creek near the 100-J intersection.
• 4. Replacement of the Market Street bridge over Frene Creek.
The other projects, in no particular order:
• Improvements to Highway 50 from west of Linn to the Gasconade/Franklin county line.
• Improvements to Highway 50 along the entire length of the highway.
• Replacement of the Highway T bridge over the Bourbeuse River.
• Improvements to Highway 28 from the Osage County line to Highway 50.
• Improvements to Highway 100 (adding shoulders) from the Osage County line to Hermann.
• Improvements to Highway 100 (adding shoulders) from Hermann to the Franklin County line.
• Improvements to Highway B (adding shoulders) from Highway 28 to Phelps County.
• Paving all county road approaches to state highways.
• Replacement of Highway B bridge over Dry Fork Creek.
• Replacement of Highway B bridge over Price Creek.
• Replacement of Highway A bridge over Third Creek.
• Replacement of Highway Y bridge over a branch of Cedar Creek.
• A new bridge over the Gasconade River at Fredricksburg to allow service on Highway J that was discontinued when the ferry operation ended.
• Increased assistance for rural transportation services.
• Converting the inactive Rock Island Railway into a hiking trail.
• Funding for additional sidewalks in Hermann connecting the downtown area to the Gasconade County R-1 School District campuses.