A major step in the Gateway Arch grounds renovation is taking place this weekend, causing road closures and detours in downtown St. Louis.
Working around the clock from Friday night until Monday morning, Missouri Department of Transportation crews are placing 40 large girders over the depressed lanes of I-44. It’s the first step in building the land bridge that will connect downtown St. Louis with the Arch grounds.
Right after CityArchRiver 2015 Foundation had announced its latest tally in private funding to spruce up the Gateway Arch grounds, sportscaster Joe Buck helped push the total a little higher.
Buck told patrons lunching in Ballpark Village that the group was within $20 of raising an even $178,210,000. He managed to coax somebody wearing a Chicago Blackhawks jersey to hand over $100, prompting the room full of St. Louis Blues fans to cheer.
Buck – who helped emcee CityArchRiver’s event announcing the fundraising figure – said he was impressed by the project’s progress.
Ed Lammering wore his top hat to a groundbreaking last month beside the Gateway Arch, but left his horse, Lukes, at the St. Louis Carriage Company’s stable on the other side of Busch Stadium. He held a sign which read, “Where do we stand? – carriage drivers.”
The carriage company is among several businesses that have concerns about the impact of the $360 million CityArchRiver 2015 project. Work will include expanding the Arch grounds over Interstate 70, carving out a new central entrance for the underground museum and numerous other major improvements.
An effort to improve safety and access between the Gateway Arch and the riverfront has begun. City leaders and developers kicked off construction Thursday afternoon on the second phase of redeveloping the Arch grounds.
The $33-million project, centered along Leonor K. Sullivan Bvld., will elevate the corridor by nearly three feet to reduce flooding as well as add bike paths, walkways, better lighting and landscaping.
A busy area of downtown St. Louis will close for about a month starting today as part of the project to improve the area around the Gateway Arch.
The Missouri Department of Transportation says Washington Avenue between Memorial Drive and Second Street will shut down after Monday morning rush hour.
The closing is part of a project to create a parkway over Interstate 70 and improve access between the Arch area and the rest of downtown. The multi-million dollar project is expected to be complete in 2015.