Katy Trail bridge at Rocheport reopens

Friday, May 27, 2011 | 7:23 p.m. CDT

COLUMBIA — The Katy Trail bridge over Moniteau Creek near Rocheport reopened Friday after closure for repairs.

John Zondca, mayor of Rocheport and owner of the Rocheport General Store, was excited about the renovated bridge, which connects Rocheport with Boonville and points west.

“It looks magnificent,” Zondca said. “The entire community is excited for it to be opened.”

The bridge was constructed in the 1940s, and much of its original structure has been replaced. The wooden piers and wooden deck were replaced with concrete structures.

Preserving the historical significance of the bridge has been an important process as well.

“Were happy that they reused the old trestle for historical purposes,” Zondca said.

The renovations, which began in September 2010, were delayed by high waters. The bridge has been closed since winter.

The bridge is located next to the old railroad tunnel on the trail. The Missouri River is forecast to remain above flood stage through the holiday weekend, and Renee Bungart of the state Department of Natural Resources said there was the potential for the trail to flood west of the tunnel.

“Our historical data indicates that the bridge won’t be affected,” Bungart said.

“All of our closures will be posted on,” Bungart said. She recommends that anyone planning to travel on the Katy this weekend keep updated on flooding through the website.

"There's still plenty of miles to travel on the Katy Trail even if the Missouri River continues to rise," Bungart said.

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