Warrenton Board of Aldermen discuss I-70 Expansion, Pinckney Property in work session

By Jack Underwood, Staff Writer
Posted 4/11/24

The Warrenton Board of Aldermen met for a work session meeting the evening of April 2 before their meeting last week.

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Warrenton Board of Aldermen discuss I-70 Expansion, Pinckney Property in work session


The Warrenton Board of Aldermen met for a work session meeting the evening of April 2 before their meeting last week. Topics of discussion included the MoDOT Interstate 70 expansion project and the Pinckney Property. 

Aldermen heard from MoDOT officials including Project Director Kim Trainor, Deputy Project Director Chris Kelly and Area Engineer Jeff Niemeyer. Discussion centered around the form that the expansion would take, particularly where and how the interstate would narrow to two lanes. 

The I-70 expansion project is being constructed in several phases to expand the interstate to three lanes across the state and is expected to be completed in 2030. The second phase, extending from Warrenton to Wentzville, is not expected to begin construction until at least the spring of 2025. 

Trainor explained to board members where MoDOT is in the process and how the project may be constructed. The discussion that followed included how the project would be completed, where funds would be allocated and what role the city of Warrenton would play. 

Design concepts from MoDOT have referred to the phase of the project as Warrenton to Wentzville, although according to Trainor, where the interstate will narrow in the Warrenton city limits is not set in stone. 

Current MoDOT plans have the interstate narrowing “just to the east of (Highway) 47,” Trainor said. Alderman questioned why they would not extend the third lane to the intersection to the interstate and Highway 47. 

“We are looking at that, we are a little concerned with how tight it is right there,” Trainor said, “we also want to be mindful of not having to build something that gets ripped out with the next phase.”

Alderman Roger Romaker expressed concerns about narrowing the roadway before the intersection, especially with the traffic that the intersection can see on busier days. 

“If you get very close to this interchange, there are times on a Friday, on the weekend, on game day, when this interchange backs up all the way onto the highway,” Romaker said. 

Trainor elaborated that although MoDOT has produced a possible plan for the project the nature of the bid and contract process meant that it could take a different form. 

The project will be a design-build project meaning that while MoDOT will provide the project goals, budget and schedule, the design work and construction will be up to the contractor to whom the bid is awarded. 

Trainor said that they will require contractors to build at least to where their plan extends to although a contractor could offer to build further. 

“That’s what we’re going to have in our contract, yes,” Trainor said, “fingers crossed somebody proposes to go further.”

It is important to note that in later phases of the project the length of the interstate in Missouri is planned to expand to three lanes. Under that plan I-70 west of Warrenton would eventually be expanded to three lanes as well, eliminating the need to narrow the interstate. 

“I would be in favor, if you’re able to run that third lane all the way off that exit just like it is there once that third lane takes you up to 61 north (on I-70), it’s an automatic exit,” Alderman Jack Crump said. 

Board members also discussed a request from the owners of the Pinckney Property to be released from some of the requirements of their sale agreement with the city. The city sold the property to the current owners in August with the condition that they remain within all of the city codes for streets, sidewalks, streetlights and lot sizes. 

City Clerk Melody Rugh said the new developer for the property had requested that some of those requirements be lifted, although they did not clarify why. Aldermen were not receptive to the request without specificity and agreed that without further reasoning they saw no reason to allow the restrictions to be lifted. 

“I think we should keep it the same unless they have something specific they want,” Romaker said.