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163rd Street opening under U.S. 71 delayed

Bad news for south Kansas City commuters.

Plans to open 163rd Street to through traffic under U.S. 71 will be delayed a month because of construction issues. Highway planners hoped to reopen the road to through traffic by the end of June, but will be delayed because of unexpected problems with the rock that will support the foundations of the new bridge being constructed.

Engineers had to go back and redesign part of the bridge, which in turn forced contractors to order new material Now, 163rd Street is expected to reopen at the end of July or early August.

MoDOT is spending about $11 million to reconstruct the interchange at that location. The work is part of a larger project that’s intended to connect the east and west side of project. The interchange is expected to be completed by June 2010.

When completed, the new 163rd Street is expected to improve access to Belton and Raymore, relieving traffic backups at the Route 58 interchange

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