I live in Kansas City, Missouri in a region known around here as "north of the river". The reasoning behind this phrase is that the Missouri River stops going westward at this point and gently moves northwest.
In order to go to downtown Kansas City, to Kansas, or pretty much any place across the Missouri river you have to cross one of the many bridges in our fair town. This has usually not been a problem until this summer and for, apparently, the next 7 months.
On May 17th, 2005 one of the major bridges across the Missouri was closed for approximately 7 months. If you would like more information click here. This website was developed by the Missouri Department of Transportation to help people living in the "northland" find an alternate route across the river. It is also helpful to those passing through town who are unfamiliar with our region. Over 90,00 people had to find an alternate route across the river to work, shop or whatever else they need to do "south" of the river. This means more traffic and the need to leave earlier for work. This bridge will be closed for painting and refurbishing which hasn't been done since the bridge opened in the 50's.
Just recently I discovered that it wasn't enough to close one bridge going through Kansas City but now the Kansas Department of Transportation has decided to close yet another bridge that is a thoroughfare and alternate route across the river. Approximately 24,000 people will have to find an alternate route across the river. This bridge is scheduled to be closed for about 60 days give or take.
So why should anyone care? I care because I have to drive over the river everyday to get to work. I already leave earlier than usual and now I'll have to leave even earlier than that. I am not a morning person and do not like to get up early. I do not like traffic nor do I appreciate MDOT and KDOT's lack of communication between each other. Why couldn't the 2nd bridge be closed before or AFTER the other bridge closing? Personally I think this was poor planning on someone's part. Bridge crossing is already congested so why should KDOT add to the problem? I guess I'll just have to get up earlier.
Post Script 6/9/05 The other bridge that will be closed is the I-635 bridge. Fun times