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Politics

Traffic Slows As Grand Is Widened Near Missouri State

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Road construction on Grand Street will slow traffic throughout the summer. Photo Credit-Shane Franklin

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If you’ve traveled down Grand Street near the Missouri State campus in Springfield lately, you’re aware of the construction, and have possibly incurred delays. KSMU’s Shane Franklin has more on the construction’s cause, and how long it will take to complete.

The road work near Holland Avenue and Grand is a continuation of the five-lane widening of the roadway. The section of Grand west of Holland, plus the intersection at National is already 5-lane, explained Martin Gugel, a city traffic engineer for the Springfield Public Works Department.

“This is the only piece that we have on Grand left that’s four-lane. This is the first phase of maybe at least another two or three that will finish that widening out at National,” Gugel said.

Work started just days after MSU’s graduation, so not to interfere with the already busy student traffic near the University. Initially, a band of trees were removed, to make room for the widening.

Gugel assures that all trees will be replanted by the construction’s completion.

Currently workers are relocating utility lines along Grand, and traffic has been condensed to two lanes.

This phase of the project is scheduled to wrap up before the fall semester begins.

“We should have everything open to traffic. There could be a couple button up items, and things that wouldn’t require lane drops or any kind of restrictions of travel on Grand,” said Gugel.

The next phase of the project is to complete the widening all the way through National, but Gugel says funding from the University and the City is required, notably for the portion of Grand above the pedestrian tunnel which connects to a parking lot south of the University. This section won’t begin for at least another year.

For KSMU News, I’m Shane Franklin.