Closed Rocheport tunnel causes headaches for bikers, residents

1 month 2 days 19 hours ago Friday, April 19 2019 Apr 19, 2019 Friday, April 19, 2019 6:32:00 PM CDT April 19, 2019 in News
By: Isaac Jahns, KOMU 8 Reporter and Kyle McCubbin, KOMU 8 Digital Reporter
loading

ROCHEPORT - Missouri State Parks said a tunnel on the Katy Trail will be closed for at least another month, meaning bikers and pedestrians will need another way around to get to Rocheport.

Melanie Smith, the Katy Trail Coordinator with Missouri State Parks, said the Rocheport tunnel is closed for maintenance until mid-May. Smith said they are focusing on removing trees above the tunnel that could fall and pose a risk to bikers if left alone.

In addition, Smith said crews are working on the scaling process, meaning the removal of excess gravel and rocks from the tunnel's entrances. 

Smith said information on the status of the trail's closure is posted on the Missouri State Parks website. However, that information never reached some of the people who needed it the most.

Brett Dufur, innkeeper of Katy Trail Bed and Breakfast in Rocheport, said there's been activity around the tunnel for a while.

"For the last few weeks, the Department of Natural Resources has been clearing quite a few trees from the top of the bluff above the Katy Trail tunnel, and it's just left a lot of residents with a big question mark on what is going on," Dufur said.

But the closure is affecting more people than the local residents. 

Deb Cary came from Massachusetts to bike the Katy Trail. After biking nearly 80 miles over three days, she found out from another biker that the Rocheport Tunnel was closed.

"Just as we started on the trail this morning, that's when we realized that was going to be a problem," Cary said.

The Missouri State Park website said bikers should take a detour along the shoulder of U.S. Highway 40. Cary said she couldn't do that because she was pulling a cart along with her. She said she took a 20 minute shuttle ride from New Franklin to Rocheport instead.

The repurposed railroad tunnel was completed over 120 years ago, but Smith said there aren't structural issues with the tunnel.

While Dufur still has questions as to how long the tunnel will be closed, he said the tunnel is an important part of Rocheport's heritage.

"We're grateful for it still being a part of our community and appreciate what the DNR is doing to stabilize and preserve that local gem," Dufur said.

Smith said there's no exact date set for the tunnel's re-opening.

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA - University of Missouri Police are asking for help searching for a man who "could be dangerous." He went... More >>
6 hours ago Wednesday, May 22 2019 May 22, 2019 Wednesday, May 22, 2019 6:07:00 PM CDT May 22, 2019 in News
MEXICO - Missouri Military Academy has brought back its baseball team for the first time in five years. A... More >>
6 hours ago Wednesday, May 22 2019 May 22, 2019 Wednesday, May 22, 2019 5:50:00 PM CDT May 22, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY – Three campers were evacuated on Tuesday at the Mari-Osa Delta campground due to flooding. Patrick Duncan,... More >>
6 hours ago Wednesday, May 22 2019 May 22, 2019 Wednesday, May 22, 2019 5:39:00 PM CDT May 22, 2019 in News
MONITEAU COUNTY - People in Moniteau County are cleaning up extensive damage after storms came rushing through Tuesday night. ... More >>
10 hours ago Wednesday, May 22 2019 May 22, 2019 Wednesday, May 22, 2019 1:26:00 PM CDT May 22, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - North Jefferson City has been ordered to evacuate by 5 p.m. due to flooding. An emergency... More >>
12 hours ago Wednesday, May 22 2019 May 22, 2019 Wednesday, May 22, 2019 12:10:00 PM CDT May 22, 2019 in News
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Oklahoma was bracing Wednesday for more rain, with parts of the state already flooded following days... More >>
12 hours ago Wednesday, May 22 2019 May 22, 2019 Wednesday, May 22, 2019 11:50:05 AM CDT May 22, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Many roads across mid-Missouri are closed due to recent storms and heavy rain, and with more storms... More >>
12 hours ago Wednesday, May 22 2019 May 22, 2019 Wednesday, May 22, 2019 11:37:00 AM CDT May 22, 2019 in News
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Kansas paid out-of-state law firms at least $899,000 in an ultimately unsuccessful attempt to defund... More >>
13 hours ago Wednesday, May 22 2019 May 22, 2019 Wednesday, May 22, 2019 11:09:00 AM CDT May 22, 2019 in News
MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Wisconsin-based convenience store chain Kwik Trip has removed some vegetable trays from its stores after several... More >>
14 hours ago Wednesday, May 22 2019 May 22, 2019 Wednesday, May 22, 2019 9:36:00 AM CDT May 22, 2019 in News
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (AP) - NASCAR is buying International Speedway in a deal worth about $2 billion. International Speedway... More >>
14 hours ago Wednesday, May 22 2019 May 22, 2019 Wednesday, May 22, 2019 9:27:00 AM CDT May 22, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — A judge has reversed the Missouri Department of Public Safety's revocation of the peace officer... More >>
15 hours ago Wednesday, May 22 2019 May 22, 2019 Wednesday, May 22, 2019 8:51:00 AM CDT May 22, 2019 in News
ROCHEPORT - A community effort to hold back flood waters began in Rocheport Wednesday morning. With recent rain causing... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, May 21 2019 May 21, 2019 Tuesday, May 21, 2019 11:00:00 PM CDT May 21, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Missouri's corrections officers are some of the lowest paid in the country. That's created staff shortages, leading... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, May 21 2019 May 21, 2019 Tuesday, May 21, 2019 11:00:00 PM CDT May 21, 2019 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) - A severe storm in the St. Louis area is forcing Lambert Airport to temporarily halt all... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, May 21 2019 May 21, 2019 Tuesday, May 21, 2019 6:51:00 PM CDT May 21, 2019 in News
FULTON - After three years and $140 million in construction, the Fulton State Hospital is ready to start celebrating. ... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, May 21 2019 May 21, 2019 Tuesday, May 21, 2019 6:33:00 PM CDT May 21, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - People looking for work will have a chance to mingle with about a dozen employers at a hiring... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, May 21 2019 May 21, 2019 Tuesday, May 21, 2019 5:39:00 PM CDT May 21, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY- The Missouri River could crest over flood stage because of ongoing storms, according to Jefferson City's Department of... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, May 21 2019 May 21, 2019 Tuesday, May 21, 2019 5:00:00 PM CDT May 21, 2019 in Weather
JEFFERSON CITY -- Several abortion rights groups gathered throughout the state, Tuesday to protest Missouri's newly-passed anti-abortion bill. The... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, May 21 2019 May 21, 2019 Tuesday, May 21, 2019 2:49:00 PM CDT May 21, 2019 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 67°
1am 67°
2am 66°
3am 66°
4am 66°