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      Site wants your feedback on Champ Clark bridge project

      The Missouri Department of Transportation launched a website aimed at getting feedback on a project that would replace the Champ Clark Bridge in Louisiana, Mo.

      The site www.champclarkbridge.com offers a video about the proposal and highlights environmental and safety concerns related to the project that is still in its infant stages.

      MoDOT officials are also seeking feedback on where the new bridge should be located.

      The site is tied to a public meeting scheduled for Nov. 8 at the Twin Pike Family YMCA in Louisiana.

      The project will start with an environmental assessment. That could take up to two years. During the course of the environmental assessment, MoDOT will hold multiple public meetings which it expects will create a citizen's advocacy group.

      Though efforts will be officially underway, they will be limited as no funding is available for the project. Replacing the bridge could cost up to $100 million, which would likely be covered by a combination of federal and state funds. Costs will shared between MoDOT and IDOT, with MoDOT managing the project. The estimate includes roads to connect U.S. 54 to the new bridge, engineering costs, right-of-way property acquisitions, the environmental assessment, as well as the actual construction of the bridge.

      Over the past 10 years MoDOT spent approximately $6 million maintaining the 84-year-old bridge. Further maintenance will be necessary to continue to keep the bridge safe.

      As the project is still in its earliest stages, MoDOT has more questions than answers. The environmental assessment will help answer those questions.