Eads Bridge

Joseph Leahy/St. Louis Public Radio

Rehabilitation of the 138-year-old Eads Bridge is moving forward after two years of delays and ballooning project costs.

The project was to begin in 2009 with $24 million in federal stimulus funding, but labor disputes between contractors and unions, and the project’s pricetag, which inflated to $36 million, kept the bridgework from getting started.

John Nations, Metro’s President and CEO says the bridge’s age also made the bidding process difficult. 

(via Flickr/IndofunkSatish)

Eads Bridge over budget, behind schedule

Elected officials from Missouri and Illinois will gather tomorrow at the Eads Bridge to break ground on a $36 million rehabilitation project for the 138-year-old structure.

But the St. Louis Post-Dispatch finds that the federally-funded  project is over budget and behind schedule.

(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

St. Louis police have identified a man who died after falling from a Mississippi River bridge.

Police say the victim was 68-year-old Reed Highfield of Lebanon, Ill. He fell from the Eads Bridge shortly after 4 p.m. Thursday. It wasn't clear what caused the fall but it is not considered suspicious.

Rescue crews found Highfield close to the bank on the Missouri side and pulled him to shore. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

UPI/Bill Greenblatt

Cardinals lose Game 2 of World Series

The Texas Rangers rallied against the Cardinals’ bullpen last night to win Game 2 of the World Series 2-1 at Busch Stadium.  

Both starters Jaime Garcia and the Rangers’ Colby Lewis matched zeroes for the first six frames before Allen Craig’s pinch-single broke the ice. Cards closer Jason Motte was called on to protect the Cards’ 1-0 lead. He’s been hot, with five postseason saves, but was tagged with the loss in this one.

(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

As part of ongoing construction efforts, the Eads Bridge will be closed this weekend.

The bridge will be closed to all traffic beginning at 8 p.m. Oct. 21 (tomorrow) and will reopen at 3 a.m. Oct. 24 (Monday).

Motorists and public transportation users alike will be affected by the closure, and Metro, which owns the bridge, provides the following information regarding alternative routes or means of transportation:

Good morning! Here are some of today's starting headlines:

  • According to the St. Louis  Post- Dispatch, incoming Missouri speaker of the House Steve Tilley says he may refuse to seat a new representative from Kansas City because of allegations of voter fraud in the Democratic primary. Such a move is allowed under Missouri law, but is rare. The Post-Dispatch reports that Tilley was presented this month with a nearly 100 page document alleging widespread voter fraud from failed Democrat candidate Will Royster, who lost he primary in the 40th legislative district to John J. Rizzo by a single vote. Rizzo went on to win the general election against a Libertarian candidate. Tilley's move would cast a light on a a topic Republicans in Missouri have been pushing unsuccessfully for several years; the concept of requiring every voter to present a photo ID when voting. Rizzo called Royster's complaints "sour grapes."
  • Suburban St. Louis police have released a 911 call placed from the home of former Anheuser-Busch CEO August Busch IV earlier this month. A Busch employee called to report a woman who was "just not waking up " and who was later found dead at the home. She's been identified as 27-year-old Adrienne Martin. The cause of death has not been released. Frontenac Police Chief Thomas Becker also said Busch was at home at the time. Busch's lawyer has said there was nothing suspicious about the death.
  • Missouri lawmakers are again seeking ideas from the public for restructuring state government to cut costs. Las year, the Senate took a rare break from formal floor debates to consider ideas for restructuring stat government that were submitted by Missourians. Republican Senate leader Rob Mayer says he plans to do it again in the first weeks of the annual legislative session that starts next month. Mayer, of Dexter, says lawmakers need to consider any idea about how to cut spending. Ideas can be submitted anonymously online at a Senate Web page on rebooting state government.
  • 2011 will see some major work on the Eads Bridge over the Mississippi River. Metro, which owns the bridge, says time and weather have deteriorated the 136-year-old structure. Metro President John Nations says the agency will use $24.5 million in federal stimulus funds to replace and repair structural elements on the bridge, as well as apply a protective coating on the steel.

"We'll also be doing some improvements to our tracks in that area to also enhance our system. So it's going to be a big project and the region, I know, is interested in it. I actually get asked about it a lot simply because the Eads Bridge is such a big symbol for this region and for the Midwest. " - Nations

Nations says the road on the top deck of the Eads will have to be closed for two to three months while the work on the bridge takes place.