Local residents have been detouring around the bridge replacement projects over the West Fork Locust Creek and Elm Branch since June. The days of those detours are over. U.S. Route 136 east of Lucerne opened to traffic over both bridges this afternoon.
The Missouri Department of Transportation contracted with Boone Construction Company of Columbia to rebuild both bridges along the same alignment as the previous structures.
Originally planned to open at the end of September, weather pushed back that opening until today.
The old bridges served Putnam County travelers since 1931 and carry more than 2,100 cars and trucks each day. The new bridges have both roadway improvements and safety enhancements. The new bridges are each 32 feet wide with wider lanes and new four-foot shoulders.