Route A from Washington to Union is going to be a safer road to travel after improvements are made in 2014. The Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) expects the work to begin this coming spring, with the project to be completed in the 2014 construction season.
Judy Wagner, area engineer for MoDOT, told the Washington Area Highway Transportation Committee the past week that plans for the project have been completed and bids will be sought soon. The improvement includes construction of 2-foot shoulders, “softening” some curves, guardrails and drainage improvements.
It will be a difficult project due to the utility poles and heavy traffic, Wagner said.
Route A was built for an earlier era of vehicle travel. It is an outdated road because of the increase in traffic due to the growth along the entire route of the roadway. The cost to acquire rights of way so curves could be eliminated, and for widening work to be done, would be prohibitive. What MoDOT plans to do is chiefly safety measures.
Route A is one of those roads that motorists have to be alert when driving on it because of the present conditions. Even after the proposed improvements are made, it will be safer, but still a roadway that will require extra caution by motorists.
Many people remember the days when accidents on “deadman’s curve” were common. Many of the accidents involved fatalities. Other accidents resulted in clipped mailboxes with vehicles ending up in yards.
For people who have to travel the road every day, improved driving conditions are on the way.