Plans to replace Kingshighway bridge to be unveiled; detours to -

Plans to replace Kingshighway bridge to be unveiled; detours to affect thousands of drivers

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ST. LOUIS (KMOV) -- The shutdown of one of the busiest roads in St. Louis will mean detours for thousands of drivers. The bridge on Kingshighway between Vandeventer Avenue / Southwest Avenue and Shaw Boulevard will be demolished and replaced in 2013.

The 75-year old bridge is not only in poor shape, it cannot accomodate the high volume of traffic. More than 30,000 drivers use that stretch of Kingshighway every day, St. Louis Streets Department Director Todd Waelterman said.

"I get more feedback about the flow of traffic on Kingshighway than any other street in the city. This is a very tough road, with a lot of people and a lot of commutes on it," Waelterman said.

Detours will include Vandeventer, Hampton, Shaw, and McRee.

Construction will begin in spring or summer of 2013 and will last a year. The bridge will not be the only major aspect of the project. The plan also calls for re-configuring Shaw Avenue saw that it no longer "breaks" up in two parts at Kingshighway. The eastern leg of Shaw Avenue will be moved south so it is aligned with the western leg. Waelterman said the new alignment will make getting navigation much easier.

"We'll be able to allow left-turn movement to come in here. So when you come off I-44, you'll be able to turn to the Botanical Gardens," he explained.

A public hearing about the plans will take place in Room 208 at St. Louis City Hall Wednesday, May 2, at 4 p.m. Maps and other details of the project will be provided.

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