REPUBLIC, Mo.– MoDOT is planning on re-aligning Route MM in the next few years, as drivers call the intersection of the railroad and MM risky.
Drivers have said rush hour backs up traffic and causes congestion near the track. Just before 6 p.m. on Tuesday, a train hit a livestock trailer stopped on the tracks.
Police are still investigating the cause of that crash, but others are concerned with the area in general.
In 2017, MoDOT released a study about train track crossings in Republic. Neighbors picked the crossing at Route MM to be the least safe in town, even saying there was not enough space between the tracks and the intersection of U.S. 60 and Route MM.
Back in February, MoDOT shared plans to reduce traffic delays and improve safety at several stoplights in Republic. The first phase would make Route MM five lanes wide between I-44 and North of James River Freeway— something drivers are asking for.
“They need to make an underpass or an overpass, something, and probably widen the lanes,” one driver said. “With the Y right there and the left turn right after the train tracks, it gets a little hairy, especially if it’s backed up and people are waiting. Especially if it’s taking a longer time.”
MoDOT also plans on adding a new road that would connect Farm Road 160 to U.S. 60 so drivers don’t have to use Route MM. Additionally, they look to build a new intersection between Route MM to U.S. 60 west of Commercial Avenue and Farm Road 103, with the intersection also having a road connecting to Route ZZ and Route M. The intersection of this new road would be a roundabout.
The first phase of the project is beginning in 2024. The second phase is scheduled for 2025 with room for potential future projects to be developed with remaining prioritized concepts as funding becomes available.