Metro-East News

MoDOT, IDOT to close off most lanes leading up to Poplar Street Bridge this weekend

If you’re planning to use highways to and from downtown St. Louis this coming weekend you’ll need an alternate route away from the Poplar Street Bridge.

Between Friday night and Monday morning, the Illinois Department of Transportation and the Missouri Department of Transportation are planning to close highways on both sides of the river that lead up to the PSB.

IDOT plans to close westbound Interstate 55/64 at the Interstate 55/70/64 interchange in East St. Louis. Demolition is planned of a structure that leads up to the Martin Luther King Bridge, which also is closed.

Interstate 55 traffic is planned to be detoured to Interstate 255 south across the Jefferson Barracks Bridge.

For drivers who need to go west on the PSB, they’ll need to take I-255 south to Illinois 3 north through Sauget. That road will lead back to I-64 west.

Motorists also will be able get onto I-64 west from East St. Louis through entrances off of Main Street and Piggott Avenue.

MoDOT plans to close eastbound I-64 between Jefferson Avenue in St. Louis and Illinois 3. Crews are scheduled to replace an expansion joint that crosses all eastbound I-64 lanes during the closure, MoDOT said.

People heading into downtown or Illinois this weekend should consider using I-70 or I-255/I-270, MoDOT said.

IDOT plans to begin its closure at 9 p.m. Friday. MoDOT plans to begin its closure at 7 p.m.

Roads are scheduled to be open by 6 a.m. Monday.

“It’s probably not the best weekend to be going downtown, but there are other ways to get there,” said John Scheibal, an IDOT construction engineer.

Scheibal said both agencies planned the closures in order to avoid major events. The Cardinals are scheduled to play in Detroit this coming weekend.

Alternate routes across the Mississippi River include taking the Eads Bridge for those traveling locally.

Other ways across the river include the I-270 Bridge and the McKinley Bridge in Madison County.

Motorists west on I-64, also will be able to go to I-70 west over the Stan Musial Veterans Memorial Bridge.

“Local (motorists) know the different bridges and will pick one that’s best for them,” Scheibal said.

He said the two agencies do try to coordinate projects, but added both projects have defined timelines that need to be met.

Scheibal added it’s sometimes better “to bite the bullet and get it done.”

MoDOT also said crews plan to start work on westbound I-64 this weekend. On Monday, one additional lane will be closed westbound, bringing the total to two lanes closed on the PSB through September.

Joseph Bustos: 618-239-2451.