Baxter Construction Almost Finished


Erik Holladay

Baxter road has been closed and remodeled for the past year.  It has recently opened back up for public use, but construction is not done yet.  It is currently being widened from its original two lanes to three lanes.

“The additional third lane will be a shared turn lane.  This is important because under the old layout, just one lane in each direction, traffic back ups were common, since a vehicle turning “left” has to wait for an opening in oncoming traffic before they can make a turn.  The shared turning lane will substantially improve traffic flow on this heavily used road,” Public Information Manager of St. Louis County David Wrone said.

There were many repairs that were needed on this road as well.

“The bridge needed to be replaced because it was so rusty, and there were a number of concerns about the number of accidents in the section of roadway due to sharp curves, limited sight distance and vertical geometry,” Spokesman of Chesterfield Government Mike Geisel said.

The total length of the project is 5,200 feet (almost 1 mile), and also includes construction of a 2,300 foot sidewalk.

“The closure between Manor Creek and Country Ridge certainly negatively affected drivers, including bus drivers and students driving to and from school, but allowed us to complete the total project two to four months earlier than if we hadn’t closed the road,” Wrone said.

For people living in the area, the construction made the commute challenging.

“The beginning of the school year I had to take a 5-minute detour, which isn’t much, but it was really annoying going through all the stupid roads,” Senior Misri Patel said.

Pace Construction Company is physically doing the work, under a $5.2 million contract with St. Louis County.

“This project is being paid for with tax dollars.  However, it should be understood that the road repairs are being done for a variety of reasons and while they have costs, they also have benefits,” Geisel said.

Geisel also wanted to clarify that Chesterfield is not in charge of reconstructing Baxter, St. Louis County is.  However, Chesterfield fully supports the project.

Baxter has reopened during the week of September 10 since being under construction since spring of 2011.  Construction will conclude no later than December 15, 2012.