MISSOULA — Construction crews are pouring the concrete that will help save an important highway link east of Missoula.
Last summer, Montana Department of Transportation (MDT) engineers were worried that recent flooding seasons on the Clark Fork River were starting to undermine Highway 200 east of Missoula.
The road, which had served as the main entrance to Missoula in the days before Interstate 90, still provides a valuable link for residents living in the Bonner area. Now, contractors have completed the installation of a new wall to protect the roadbed from future flooding, and today (Monday), crews were busy filling the forms with tons of concrete.
"For anybody that's familiar with it, I know that it seemed like there wasn't a lot going on as you drive back and forth across there. But all that work, it was a pretty extensive wall. Pretty unique type of construction as well that had to take place to deal with some erosion we had from the Clark Fork coming up and undercutting the old 200, the highway there right at the Marshall Canyon Road," explained MDT Missoula District Administrator Bob Vosen.
Vosen says traffic should be switch back to two lanes soon. Then crews will return next spring to complete striping and paving of the new section.