Highway administration finds no significant impact in Chester bridge study

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The Federal Highway Administration issued a finding of no significant impact for the Chester Bridge Study Sept. 27.

The multi-year National Environmental Policy study was completed by the Missouri Department of Transportation in cooperation with the highway administration and the Illinois Department of Transportation. The official finding marks the formal conclusion of the study of the existing crossing and alternatives for maintaining, rehabilitating, or replacing the crossing.

Earlier this year, MoDOT and FHA approved the Chester Bridge study’s environmental assessment and held a 30-day public comment period. Responses from public stakeholders and agencies have been incorporated into the FONSI and final EA which are available online at www.modot.org/chesterbridge.

Missouri and Illinois will share the cost of the Chester Bridge project. During its Sept. 9 meeting, the Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission approved an amendment to the 2022-2026 Statewide Transportation Improvement Program including funding for construction and right-of-way acquisition for the replacement of the Chester Bridge. Illinois, through IDOT’s FY 2022–2027 Rebuild Illinois Highway Improvement Program, has committed funding for its portion of the cost of the Chester Bridge replacement.

MoDOT has been working with FHWA and IDOT to study and plan for the replacement of the Chester Bridge connecting Missouri Route 51 and Illinois Route 150 at Chester.

To view the entire finding of no significant impact document, as well as the final environmental assessment, visit www.modot.org/chesterbridge.

The Chester Bridge Study was conducted to evaluate options to develop a safe and reliable Mississippi River crossing. The project team analyzed features to widen lanes, add emergency shoulders, improve safety, and increase transportation accessibility. The project the team studied maintenance, rehabilitation, and design alternatives and narrowed them down to one Selected Alternative – the Near Upstream Alternative (U-1) – immediately north of the existing bridge while allowing space for construction of the new crossing and demolition of the existing bridge.

The Chester Bridge Study is an Environmental Assessment being conducted by the Missouri Department of Transportation in cooperation with the Federal Highway Administration and the Illinois Department of Transportation. The study team is being led by Jacobs. The goal of the study is to develop a safe and reliable Route 51 river crossing.

To learn more about the Chester Bridge Study, visit www.modot.org/chesterbridge.

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