Obama's 'Fix it First' Program Would Mend 'Deficient' Bridges in Webster Groves
In Tuesday's State of the Union Address, President Obama touched on immigration, gun control and the economy, among other issues. In terms of infrastructure, he proposed a "Fix it First" plan that may affect bridges in Webster Groves.
President Barack Obama proposed Tuesday night what he called a "Fix It First" program to address the nation's crumbling infrastructure—like roads and bridges—in an effort to improve citizens' quality of life and bring jobs to the United States.
"I propose a 'Fix-It-First' program to put people to work as soon as possible on our most urgent repairs, like the nearly 70,000 structurally deficient bridges across the country," he said during the State of the Union Address.
"And to make sure taxpayers don’t shoulder the whole burden, I’m also proposing a Partnership to Rebuild America that attracts private capital to upgrade what our businesses need most—modern ports to move goods; modern pipelines to withstand a storm; modern schools worthy of our children."
Many of the structurally deficient bridges Obama referred to are located in the St. Louis area, according to Transportation for America. The organization's campaign says coordinators are "eager to reform how we spend transportation dollars at the federal, state and local level to create a safer, cleaner and smarter transportation system that works for everyone."
However, some cities are already actively engaged in tackling bridge repairs. Two bridges were cited as "deficient" in Webster Groves, and one of them, the Murdoch Avenue span over the BNSF railroad, was replaced over the summer and re-opened in October.
According to Transportation for America, the Murdoch bridge carries around 80,000 cars per day.
The other bridge listed is on Rock Hill Road where it crosses Shady Grove Creek, just north of the railroad. It's a much less trafficked structure with an estimated 11,980 vehicles per day and was built in 1965.
See the accompanying map for a look at other nearby deficient bridges, which are indicated in red.
Overall, Missouri is one of the worst states when it comes to inadequate bridges, ranks 7th in the country with about 17 percent of all its bridges rated as such.
That may change if Obama has anything to say about it.
"Let’s prove that there is no better place to do business than the United States of America," he said Tuesday. "And let’s start right away."