0Id MoDOT Hwy 65 bridge near Springfield to become part of trail system - Springfield Daily Citizen

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While it was formerly a part of U.S. Highway 65, the bridge, which was built in 1936, hasn’t supported vehicular traffic in decades. The bridge is an unofficial trailhead that sits above the James River just northeast of Lake Springfield and just southeast of the James River Freeway and Highway 65 interchange.

Details of the exchange

Upon determining that they no longer needed or wanted the aging bridge, the Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission, the six-member governor-appointed board that oversees MoDOT, reached out to Springfield’s Public Works Department to see if it would be interested in owning the structure. 

If MoDOT couldn’t find a taker, it intended to demolish the bridge.

Like MoDOT, Springfield Public Works had no use for the bridge, but knew of another city government group that did. ...

While the bridge already serves as an important connector for the James River and Galloway Creek Greenways, as well as the Trail of Honor Section and the James River Water Trail, its position will play an increasingly significant role in the trail system going forward.

“We think it’s even going to play an even more significant role,” Park said. “It would be hard to overstate the importance of having that trailhead at that location.”

With its proximity to the Chadwick Flyer Trail and Lake Springfield, the bridge’s role is vital amid the expansion of other amenities in the area. Construction on the Chadwick Flyer trail, which will connect Springfield and Ozark, is set to begin later this month as planning for the future of the Lake Springfield area is underway.

MoBikeFed comment: MoDOT also gave $100,000 to the Parks Board for maintenance of the bridge. That was the amount MoDOT was planning to spend to demolish the bridge.

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