Kansas City Scout


Wednesday, December 12, 2012

MoDOT ANNOUNCES The Debut of I-49 in MO

Posted by Nancy Powell
Kansas City Scout Traffic Management Center Supervisor

This historic occasion heralds the Interstate designation of 180 miles of what was formerly known as US 71 Highway along the western edge of Missouri south of Kansas City.  This act culminates years of planning to upgrade the route to interstate highway standards, which included the addition of new interchanges, overpasses and outer roads.  These safety enhancements did away with at-grade intersections, improving the overall safety for motorists using this highly travelled north – south route between Missouri and Louisiana.
The official unveiling ceremony was conducted at noon on Tuesday in Joplin, MO.  U.S. Senator Roy Blunt was a featured speaker along with Federal Highway officials and MoDOT Director, Kevin Keith.  Signs along the roadway now bear both the Interstate 49 shield as well as the US 71 sign since it will remain part of the national U.S. corridor.   North of the Three Trails Memorial Crossing in southern Kansas City, the route will retain its US 71 designation.  
Photo by Bob Edwards, MoDOT SW District Customer Relations Manager

Operationally, the new designation will impact commercial truckers and farmers using Interstate 49, as rules and regulations differ pertaining to maximum weight and axle weight distribution for trucks travelling on an interstate highway.  Additionally, agricultural implements are prohibited for operating under their own power on an interstate highway.  This machinery will need to be hauled beginning Dec. 12.  For more information about these regulations or to obtain an oversize, overweight permit, please contact MoDOT’s Motor Carrier Services division toll free at 866-831-6277.