MoDOT prepares for increased Columbia traffic this weekend
COLUMBIA - The MU Tigers play its first home football game of the season Saturday, and MoDOT is getting ready for the extra traffic.
"You're talking a 110,000 population in Columbia, 35 additional thousand students, probably an additional 30,000 fans on top of that, or 20," Mike Schupp, MoDOT Central District Area Engineer, said. "There'll be a lot of additional traffic. It will definitely be noticeable."
Managing game day traffic is a combined effort between MoDOT, the Columbia and MU Police Departments and Missouri State Highway Patrol. All four agencies will be on the roads to help make things go smoother.
"Our emergency response truck will be on duty," Schupp said. "We're working with law enforcement and if we need additional forces to come out to help with anything, they'll be called in."
For those coming from outside of Columbia, there are a few routes under construction that may cause additional delays:
- U.S. Route 63: Northbound lanes between Jefferson City and Columbia, North and southbound lanes between Columbia and the Boone/Randolph county line.
- Interstate 70 (Kansas City): Completely closed in both directions between I-435 and I-470/Route 291 starting from 9 p.m. Friday.
"We've seen it every year and it never disappoints," Schupp said. "We want to make sure that people get to their destination safe and ask that they allow time to get there."
Luckily, those already in Columbia won't have to deal with any construction delays Saturday.
"There won't be any construction going on inside the city limits of Columbia during game days simply because we want to help traffic get in and get it out as as best as possible," Schupp said. "Our maintenance folks have been spiffing up the area, picking up trash, sweeping, filling potholes, making sure that we're ready for the first game day."
The latest road conditions and travel times are available on MoDOT's Traveler Information Map or by calling 1-888-275-6636.