Three transportation projects in Phelps County have been included on a list of transportation priorities in the Meramec region.

Three transportation projects in Phelps County have been included on a list of transportation priorities in the Meramec region.
During the Meramec Regional Planning Commission (MRPC) Transportation Advisory Committee (TAC) meeting Dec. 12, members voted on top regional projects as they do each year.
Expansions of U.S. Highways 63 and 50 to four-lane corridors remain the No. 1 and No. 2 regional transportation priorities, respectively, as they have for several years.
Once it was decided these two projects should continue to be top priorities for the region, TAC members from each county shared the top three additional transportation needs from their counties.
The TAC then voted to prioritize these additional needs on a regional level.
The prioritized list will now be confirmed by the  MRPC board and shared with the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) Central District office for the projects for consideration for inclusion in MoDOT’s Statewide Transportation Improvement Plan (STIP), a five-year plan for design and
construction projects.
The other projects topping the TAC’s priority list, in order of priority, are:
3. Replacement of a one-lane bridge over the Little Bourbeuse River on Route C in Crawford County,
4. Adding lanes and traffic controls to Highway 63 in Rolla from University Drive to the Interstate 44 overpass in Phelps County,
5. Adding a third lane to Highway 28 in Owensville between the intersections of Highway 19 South and Highway 19 North in Gasconade County,
6. Improvements to the intersection of Highway 63 and 42 in Vienna to better traffic flow in Maries County,
7. Extending Route 72 in Rolla from where it currently ends at Highway 63 to a new interchange with Interstate 44 in Phelps County,
8. Adding passing lanes to Highway 8 throughout Washington County,
9. Safety improvements and adding shoulders to Highway 133 throughout Osage County,
10. Safety improvements to the guardrail on Highway 28 along Gasconade River Hill in Pulaski County,
11. Improvements to Highway 8 in Phelps County from St. James to the Crawford County line, and
12. Replacing the bridge over Fouche A’ Renault Creek on Highway 185 in Washington County.
The MRPC board will be presented with the TAC’s recommended priorities at its Jan. 16 meeting, which was rescheduled from Jan. 9.
The priority list is an annual planning exercise for the TAC, but this year it will be tasked with an additional large-scale planning process.
Missouri voters will be asked to decide on a 1 percent sales tax to fund transportation in November. Part of this ballot initiative requires MoDOT to present a list of exactly what projects will be funded through the sales tax, and MoDOT is seeking help from TACs around the state in developing this list.
The Meramec region TAC, along with the TACs associated with Mid-Missouri Regional Planning Commission and Lake of the Ozarks Council of Local Governments, will work with the MoDOT Central Office to create this list beginning in February.
At its February meeting, a MoDOT representative will attend the Meramec region  TAC meeting to further explain the process, which will involve information from a number of sources including public input gathered during MoDOT’s On The Move tour that took place this past summer.
The group will meet at 4 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 13, at the MRPC office, 4 Industrial Drive, St. James. Meetings are open to the public.
For more information on MRPC’s TAC call 573-265-2993.