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Officials with the Missouri Department of Transportation met with residents in Henrietta Thursday evening to inform them of a bridge closure.
The meeting was at the Henrietta Community Center and was a casual open house format where residents could ask one on one questions about the Willow Creek Bridge on Route H.
The bridge will be closed on May 19 to begin construction on a new deck for the bridge and is scheduled to reopen the week of June 22.
The bridge is the first in Ray County that will have a deck replacement as part of the MoDOT Safe and Sound Bridge Program. A total of 22 bridges in the county will be reconstructed over the next five years.
District 4 Safe and Sound Program Coordinator Mary Miller said the bridge should be done on time and under budget. Earlier in the day, MoDOT officially opened the first completed Safe and Sound project in Johnson County near Warrensburg. Miller said that project was completed ahead of schedule in less time than what the Willow Creek project is expected to take.
Miller said contractors have an incentive to finish on time because the builder can be fined if not completed on time.
MoDOT listed rusted beams and deteriorated concrete as reasons the bridge needed to be replaced.
Community Relations Manager Kristy Hill said the bridges are designed to last about 50 years before being replaced.
“It’s just part of the replacement cycle to keep them in good working condition,” she said.
Miller said there will be no posted signs telling travelers of the detour, but MoDOT is suggesting to residents to use Highway T as an alternate route.