EAST ST. LOUIS, IL (KPLR)- This morning is the first commute since MoDOT shut down a second right lane on the westbound Poplar Street Bridge coming into Missouri from Illinois. There have certainly been some substantial back-ups heading to the bridge. The most serious traffic tie-ups have been on the approaches to the westbound bridge.
MoDOT closed the far right westbound lane closed in May of last year while crews rebuild the ramp from the westbound Poplar to Interstate 44 east. Crews shut down the second right lane Friday night so that both lanes can be resurfaced.
MoDOT officials say keeping a smooth driving surface on the poplar has been an ongoing issue for years-they hope this project solves that problem. The ramp from route three onto the westbound Poplar is also closed. The two westbound right lanes will stay shut down for about a month. MoDOT will then reopen those two lanes and close the two left lanes for a month to resurface them.
MoDOT is encouraging drivers to take alternate routes like the Stan Span, the Eads Bridge or the Martin Luther King Bridge.
Everything should be reopened by early July.
Work on the eastbound side will start next year.