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72 Bypass kickoff scheduled

The Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) will kick off the construction of the Highway 72 bypass with a ceremony Friday in Fredericktown.

The celebration begins at 11 a.m. at the Ole Times Country Café Banquet Room, 160 Commercial Dr. Anticipated speakers include Heather Garner on behalf of U.S. Representative Jo Ann Emerson; State Sen. Jason Crowell, R-Cape Girardeau; Shelley Keeney on behalf of Missouri Speaker of the House Rod Jetton; Madison County Presiding Commissioner John Rauls; SEMO Regional Planning Director Chauncy Buchheit; Executive Vice President P.J. Kronlage, EFK Moen, LLC; and Cheryl Ball, MoDOT southeast assistant to the district engineer.

The first phase of construction of the bypass around Fredericktown includes building a roundabout at Highway 72, just east of the exchange with U.S. 67. The $1,175,538 contract for the first phase of the project was awarded last year to Chester Bross Construction of Hannibal. The project is scheduled for completion in the autumn.

The second phase of the project consists of grading the remainder of the bypass and constructing two new bridges. One will cross over Little St. Francois River and the other will cross over Village Creek.

The third phase includes paving of the entire bypass project. The second phase of the bypass project is scheduled to being in the autumn and the third phases should begin in autumn 2009.

MoDOT is partnering with Madison County to finance the three-phase project. The county will contribute approximately $3.4 million toward the estimated $7 million improvement.

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