Diverging diamond interchange will replace 50-year-old bridge at 291 and 50-Highway

LEE'S SUMMIT, Mo. -- Roadwork is about to begin on a major intersection in the metro, and it could cause you some major headaches as you drive into work.

Crews in Lee's Summit will break ground Wednesday afternoon on a project to replace the 50-year-old bridge at 291-South and 50-Highway.

Lee’s Summit officials have wanted to do this for years. They say heavy traffic in this area has sparked a ton of crashes.

Three years ago Lee’s Summit approved an $8-million bond issue to replace the 291-South bridge, but they needed $16-million to complete the project.

It took the city a couple of years to secure the rest of the funding.

The Mid America Regional Council will throw in $7-million with MODOT adding the last $1-million

The new bridge will be a diverging diamond. This type of intersection has been popping up all over the metro, where cars drive on the opposite side of the road to make it easier to get on the highway.

The diverging diamond will start on the south side of 291-South and ease congestion for those getting on 50-Highway.

To the north, there will be a roundabout at Blue Parkway and Jefferson Street. There will also be pedestrian and bike lanes going over the overpass.

MoDOT says this project will take about 18 months to complete.