Intersection of U.S. 63 and Route H Slated for Makeover

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BOONE COUNTY - The Missouri Highway and Transportation Commission awarded a project Wednesday to put  a new diamond interchange at U.S. 63 and Route H near the Columbia Regional Airport. The interchange will replace the divided highway system currently used to regulate traffic at the intersection. A full briefing and sketches of the plan can be found here.

MoDOT project manager Nicole Hood said the diamond interchange will allow drivers to enter, cross, and leave the highway much more safely. "The main purpose of this project is to improve the safety," said Hood. The project also includes J-turns replacing current access areas to U.S. 63. The MoDOT news release stated that instead of crossing over four lanes of fast moving traffic on a four lane divided highway, J-turns allow the drivers to turn right in the same direction as traffic. The new project will also include lighting at several access areas along the highway in addition to the new interchange.

"We've had the right of way to do this project ever since U.S. 63 was upgraded to a four lane divided facility," said Hood. "We've had a lot of interest and lots of people in favor of this project."

The project will begin this summer and is expected to be completed by late 2012.