The final repair job on Osage Beach Parkway before the city takes possession from MoDOT raised the ire of at least one business owner.
Kim Mercer, an employee of On the Rise Bakery and Retail, said she and owner Mike Castle feel MoDOT mishandled the project, which involved repair of several lanes of asphalt in front of the business near Case Road on Wednesday.
“I don’t think they had any consideration of what it would do to us,” she said.
On that day a year ago, On the Rise handled 200 customers. She said the customer count was at 50 by mid-afternoon Wednesday, shortly after the project was completed. Construction equipment and traffic cones obstructed entrance to the popular eatery for several hours, she said.
Mercer said Castle contacted MoDOT officials in Jefferson City, but was told these kinds of projects are done when equipment is available. On the Rise had no advance notice that traffic would be disrupted, nor any explanation as to how much of the roadway would be involved.
MoDOT Area Engineer Bob Lynch agreed that notifying On the Rise could have been handled differently.
“That’s something we probably could have done better,” he said. “It’s something that came up quickly, and we didn’t know exactly when the contractor would be available.”
The city of Osage Beach will consider an agreement at its Thursday night meeting to take over ownership and maintenance of the Parkway, which could happen as early as Friday. City officials have worked with MoDOT for several months to identify areas that need repair. Assuming ownership of the Parkway is part of overall Expressway project.
Lynch said there was access to the business throughout the day, but admitted “we learned a little bit on this project. We could have done a better job in the area.”
He noted, however, that he and others observed customers going in and out of the parking lot while the construction was underway. He said crews had one lane open in each direction by early afternoon.
Mercer said she arrived at work about 8 a.m. Wednesday and MoDOT trucks began pulling into the area shortly thereafter. She was told the street would be shut down during part of the project.
She questioned the timing of the repair work.
“If they had any insight into Osage Beach business, they would have known most businesses are closed on Mondays or Tuesdays,” Mercer said. “I don’t think we were notified properly, and it cost the business and some of my servers money today.”
Page 2 of 2 - Mercer said MoDOT and the contractor could have done a better job with signage and placement of the traffic control cones. The right turn from Case Road onto the Parkway was blocked from about 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., according to Mercer.
She said customers took the Case Road exit only to be told they had to make a U-turn and take the Nichols exit or go back across Grand Glaize Bridge. Customers had to park across the street and walk to restaurant, according to Mercer.
“We realize it was an inconvenience, but we wanted to get in and out as quickly as we could,” Lynch said.
All lanes were reopened by mid-afternoon.