Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the goal of the study?

To develop an ultimate design concept plan and prioritized recommendations for bridge rehabilitation or replacement that upgrades the bridges and improves the safety, mobility and efficiency for all modes of transportation for the Lewis and Clark Viaduct study area.

Click on map image for a larger study area map.

What is the study area?
(click on the map to enlarge) 

The primary study limits of the interchange are:

  • I-70 from the north Central Avenue ramp gore locations to the Kansas/Missouri State Line
  • Minnesota Avenue from 5th Street to the I-70 Intersection
  • Washington Boulevard from 5th Street to the I-70 Intersection
  • Fairfax Trafficway from River City Drive to the I-70 Intersection

Ramp intersections and tie-in points on the following side streets will be evaluated:

  • 5th Street
  • James Street
  • Armstrong Avenue

How long will the study take to complete?

The study will be completed in about 16 months and has three phases::

  • Phase 1 - evaluate existing and future no-build conditions;
  • Phase 2 - determine feasible build alternatives and select a preferred improvement concept, and
  • Phase 3 - develop a phasing plan which prioritizes improvements over time. (Download Study Schedule)

Are there opportunities for public input?

Yes. The Kansas Department of Transportation is committed to engaging the public to learn what types of transportation investments are important. For the Lewis and Clark Viaduct Concept Study there will be two public meetings, electronic outreach including a website, on-line surveys, community presentations, media relations, public official’s briefings, and an issues workshop and a listening session.  If you are interested in staying involved, please sign up for electronic meeting notifications on our "Contact" page.. 

What happens after the study?

The study will identify what bridges would be rehabilitated or replaced and when as well as any other improvements.  At this time, neither funding for construction or a construction schedule have been identified.

Who are the study partners?

Since the interchange area plays a vital role in connecting Missouri and Kansas, KDOT engaged the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT), the Unified Government of Kansas City Kansas and Wyandotte County (UG), the Mid-America Regional Council (MARC) and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) as study partners.

Why are improvements needed?

Currently, KDOT spends approximately $1 million dollars annually to maintain the Lewis and Clark Viaduct.  Those costs are expected to rise as the viaduct continues to age.  This study will identify how to best invest future money in the viaduct area that upgrades the bridges and improves safety, access and mobility in the area. 

Will the study fix the tight curves on I-70?

The study will identify areas that require improvement and that could mean making curves more gradual or increasing the length of entrance/exit ramps so there is more time to merge with other traffic. 

Is the existing Viaduct safe for travel?

Yes, given appropriate driving behaviors the viaduct is safe to travel.  KDOT inspects the Viaduct every two (2) years to evaluate the existing condition of the bridges and determine if there are any immediate needs beyond regular maintenance.  Although the Viaduct is safe for travel, it is considered functionally obsolete since it does not meet current design standards. 

How many bridges are included in the Lewis and Clark Viaduct?

The Viaduct consists of nine bridges:

  • Eastbound Ramp to I-70 (Bridge 029)
  • Westbound I-70 (Bridge 030)
  • Eastbound I-70 (Bridge 031)
  • Westbound Ramp to Fairfax Trafficway (Bridge 173)
  • Eastbound Ramp from Fairfax Trafficway (Bridge 174)
  • Westbound Ramp to Washington Blvd. (Bridge 175)
  • Eastbound Ramp from Washington Blvd. (Bridge 176)
  • Westbound Ramp to I-70 (Bridge 177)
  • Westbound Ramp to Minnesota Ave. (Bridge 178)

Stay In The Know!  Links

  Kansas Department of Transportation
Missouri Department of Transportation
Mid-America Regional Council
Unified Government of Wyandotte County