The Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission has selected Kansas City-based Massman Construction for building the new Champ Clark Bridge, with HNTB providing the design services.
The new bridge, which is a partnership between the Illinois and Missouri Departments of Transportation (MoDOT), replaces a 90-year-old structure in the city of Louisiana, Missouri, that is the oldest of its type in the northeastern portion of the state. It was named, and will retain the same name, for former presidential candidate and Speaker of the House James Beauchamp Clark, who also served as assistant prosecuting attorney in Pike County for 26 years.
“Our focus is to take care of our existing highway and bridge system and keep it in good condition,” said MoDOT Northeast District Engineer Paula Gough. “This bridge is an important link on the U.S. 54 corridor. It has served us well for many, many years, but has become increasingly unreliable. We’re excited that we can finally get to work building a new bridge.”
“We’re proud to have been selected to build the new Champ Clark Bridge and look forward to a good working relationship with the team and the region,” says Massman Vice President Mark Schnoebelen. “We know our work will not only impact local folks who travel in the area, but all motorists who cross the Mississippi River here. We’re committed to building a quality bridge at a good value as quickly as possible.”
The Massman proposal, which was one of four design-build teams competing for the contract, includes for building the new bridge just south of the existing bridge. Traffic would be allowed to continue to flow on the existing bridge through most of the construction. The plan also calls for a new 44-foot wide bridge, elevating the Illinois approach to eliminate closures from flooding and improvements to the Route 54 / Route 79 intersection in Missouri.
MoDOT says the Massman team plans to subcontract 12 percent of the construction and 16 percent of the professional and design activities to disadvantaged business enterprise companies. The department also says federal workforce goals require that 3.1 percent of those working on the project are minorities and 6.9 percent are female.
“We had the opportunity to connect the teams with DBEs this year, as well as provide a job fair last fall for anyone interested in potentially working on the new bridge,” says Keith Killen, project director of the Champ Clark Bridge and a professional engineer with MoDOT. He says another job fair will be hosted later this summer.
The Massman team will next “fine-tune” the design plans. MoDOT will then hold a public meeting to share the scope of work and proposed renderings of the new structure. Construction could begin this fall with the bridge open to traffic in the fall of 2019.
More details on the project are available at champclarkbridge.com.