Missouri has set aside $2.8 billion to expand Interstate 70 to six lanes across the state, from Kansas City to St. Louis. But none of that money is coming from the federal infrastructure law signed by President Biden two years ago.

Patrick McKenna, Director of the Missouri Department of Transportation, said federal dollars from the infrastructure law had already been earmarked for other projects before the legislature approved expanding I-70.

“In our 2023 to 2027 Statewide Transportation Improvement Program (STIP), we planned for all of the revenue that is allocated to Missouri. And we funded projects, 1,803 of them,” McKenna told Missourinet. “We’ve already completed about 500 of those projects, so we’re trucking right along.”

Construction on expanding I-70 to six lanes is scheduled to begin next summer, though the exact start date remains unclear. McKenna said, though, they expect to bring the first construction contract before the Highways and Transportation Commission for approval in February.

“Our first project is going to be the interchange at (U.S. Highway) 63 and I-70 in Columbia, headed east to Kingdom city – that interchange of (U.S. Highway) 54 and 70 – and all parts in between,” he said. “So about a 19-mile project.”

That project alone is expected to take about three years, wrapping up in late 2027. The entire expansion of I-70 is estimated to take anywhere from four to five years, according to MoDOT’s Improve I-70 website.

Copyright 2023, Missourinet.