Officials of Warren and St. Charles counties plan to meet next Monday to discuss the Augusta Bottom Road and possible solutions. One of the possible solutions would be for St. Charles County to annex that portion of the road that is in Warren County, west to Highway 47 and south to the middle of the Missouri River.
To us, that makes a lot of sense, especially because the majority of people who use the road live in St. Charles County in the Augusta area.
St. Charles County has done an excellent job in maintaining its portion of the bottom road. It has the resources to put the road in good condition and to improve it for the safety of motorists. There is justification for the annexation since it is so important to people in the Augusta area.
The road is a shortcut betweeen Augusta and Washington. St. Charles County residents use the road to travel to Mercy Hospital Washington. Since part of the southwestern part of St. Charles County is in the Washington School District, that should be a strong consideration for annexation. Also, many St. Charles County residents work in Washington.
Many Washington area residents have used the road to reach wineries in St. Charles County, which are an important part of the county’s economy. We should not forget the St. Charles County farmers who also use the road.
The road was closed last month by the town of Augusta, which has control of part of the road since it accepted federal funds after the floods in the 1990s to improve a section of what now is called a “parkway.” Augusta closed the road due to being denied liability insurance by its carrier. The town settled a lawsuit after being sued due to a fatal accident on the road. The suit still is pending against the city of Washington, which did minor repair work on the road, and the county of Warren, which has done some maintenance on the road.
The town of Augusta, with support from its wineries, and other residents of St. Charles County need to get behind the annexation solution. Washington’s Area Transportation and Highway Committee Monday approved a motion urging St. Charles County to annex the road.
There is no question that an improved and safe Augusta Bottom Road would benefit St. Charles County residents. There is ample justification for St. Charles County to annex the road. It is imperative that Augusta area residents get behind a movement for annexation.