City of Palmyra closer to connecting east and west sides of city around U.S. 61

WGEM News at Ten
Updated: Jul. 27, 2022 at 10:00 PM CDT
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PALMYRA, Mo. (WGEM) - Talks continue in Palmyra to try to improve what locals call a safety hazard for drivers. The city is working to make driving safer by connecting the east and west sides around U.S. 61.

Palmyra Police Chief Eddie Bogue said over the last 20 years, around 15 people have died in accidents trying to get on or off U.S. 61 to Palmyra.

A Citizen Advisory Group has spent the last few months discussing construction ideas for improving traffic flow. They also wants to expand access to businesses on the east side of Palmyra.

Chief Bogue said connecting the east and west sides of the highway will make it much safer for the community.

“If we have these interchanges where we can have connectivity and we can have outer road access, that’s the way things work these days because that’s what people expect,” Bogue said.

Palmyra resident Gary Hudson agreed.

“You’ll see people backed up there and it’s congested. The turn lane when you come out is not marked where they accelerate on up,” said Gary Hudson.

The citizen advisory group narrowed down three potential solutions Wednesday night:

  • Adding a diamond interchange at main cross Street and completing the east outer road on U.S. 61.
  • Adding an interchange at Route 168 to include the intersection by Cole’s Hearth Room.
  • Adding a diamond interchange on the south end of Palmyra and extending the east outer road.

Marisa Ellison with the The Missouri Department of Transportation said these are not necessarily the final options, but they are starting points for more discussion.

The group plans to have one more meeting in August when they will discuss funding options. They have not chosen a date yet.

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