The Highway 47 bridge contractor will haul rock from the causeway used during bridge construction to the Washington Regional Airport.

The city council Tuesday voted 7-0 to formalize a deal between the city and Alberici Constructors to take the rock and materials to the airport where it will be used as fill. Councilman Jeff Patke was not at Monday’s meeting.

“It will be placed in low-lying areas for possible expansion,” said John Nilges, public works director. 

The causeway is the working surface where equipment was located during construction of the bridge over the Missouri River. The contractor is required to remove the causeway as part of the project.

“Essentially, we are getting 12,000 cubic yards of material for nothing,” Nilges said. “I really can’t see any red flags.”

The material will be hauled to the airport by Alberici. 

Nilges added that the city already has obtained permitting but an exact date the work will occur is not yet known.

“It is all contingent on river levels, like everything else at the bridge,” he stated.

The construction staging area was built over eastern portions of the Rotary Riverfront Trail. The trail has been closed since September 2016 to provide a construction staging area for the new bridge.

According to Nilges, the trail must be rebuilt after the wrecking crew clears the site which will be next year before it will be reopened.

“It will get done, it just may take awhile,” he said.

A large area was needed for construction workers to assemble steel cages for the piers and for the concrete trucks to move around. There still is construction equipment being stored on the south side of the river.

Alberici laid down rock on the trail in an attempt to minimize trail damage. But, large trucks with heavy material have been driving over it.

Bridge Work

The overall project is, for now, slated to end in December.

The Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) recently told city leaders that high river levels and continued rain have delayed completion of the bridge.

There are contingencies built into the contract between the state and Alberici Constructors that allow for the project deadline to be pushed back from Sept. 5. 

Bridge contracts always ensure additional days based on flood elevation. Otherwise, companies would not bid on the projects, state officials said.

There still are several components to the bridge project to be completed, including the removal of piers, lighting, removal of dikes and other items.

The pedestrian walking path on the bridge won’t be opened until lighting on the path is installed.

The 10-foot-wide biking/walking path is along the west side. An overlook, where walkers and bikers can stop and view the river and city, is at the center bridge pier.

The lighting on the bridge deck will be inside the barrier wall on the west side of the bridge to illuminate the pedestrian walkway.