Residents and greenway users can expect temporary greenway closure and lane changes on Germania between Alabama and Highway I-55
Construction on one of our region’s most eagerly anticipated greenway connections is finally underway! On Monday December 10, construction crews started work on the first phase of the project that will connect the Gravois Greenway: Grant’s Trail to the River des Peres Greenway. When complete, it will link together three greenways and create 21 continuous miles for walking, riding bikes, pushing a stroller and using a wheelchair.
Crews will begin working on bridge abutments and approaches for a new 303 foot pedestrian bridge that will span the River des Peres. The abutments must be built higher and the approaches longer to not only keep the bridge out of the flood plain, but also ensure the greenway is ADA accessible. To accommodate construction, the River des Peres greenway is closed between Alabama and Highway I-55. Germania Blvd will be temporarily reduced to two lanes in the same area so crews can build a higher concrete barrier wall between the road and greenway. Greenway users will need to find an alternate route while construction is underway. This closure is expected to last about six months.
“We want to make sure people who use the greenway and drive on Germania Blvd are aware of the temporary greenway closure and lane changes,” says Lonny Boring, Great Rivers Greenway Senior Project Manager. “There are a lot of utilities in this area and extreme care must be taken to build the new bridge over the River des Peres. We are working closely with our partners and construction team to minimize inconvenience for people who walk, ride bikes or drive in this area.”
The expanded Gravois Greenway will extend 1.5 miles from its current endpoint at Hoffmeister Avenue where it will connect with the River des Peres Greenway near Primm Street and Germania. In addition to the bridge over the River des Peres, plans call for a 600 foot pedestrian bridge to take greenway users over Bayless and an underpass beneath the Weber Road on-ramp to northbound Highway I-55. Both of the new steel bridges are being manufactured by Wheeler of Minneapolis, Minnesota. They will be trucked to St. Louis in segments and assembled on site.
“It has taken a lot of planning, partnership and creativity to connect these two greenways,” says Boring. “We’ve had to design a route that not only lies within a narrow corridor of land, but also parallels a major interstate highway. Other challenges include an active rail line, high-volume roadways, above-and-below-ground utilities and a river crossing. We are grateful for all the partners who helped us work around these challenges so we can deliver the greenway connection the region has been asking for.”
The entire project is slated for completion in the spring of 2020.
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