I-44 Rest Area

I-44 Rest Area

Location: St. Clair, Mo.

Client: Missouri Department of Transportation

A study team consisting of Burns & McDonnell Engineers and Abo Copeland Architects met with Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) District 6 engineers to begin a process of identifying a suitable site to relocate the existing rest area on I-44 near St. Clair, Mo. After discussions about what types of facilities and amenities should be considered, a search for the best location for the new rest area/welcome center began.

Burns & McDonnell engineers investigated 11 potential sites. Due to topography, the availability of utilities, proximity to existing interchanges and other factors, only three sites met all criteria. An interim report was submitted explaining the advantages and deficiencies of each site and providing a matrix of the variables considered. The matrix consisted of criteria including aesthetics, highway geometrics, the compatibility with adjacent land uses, utility availability, distance to commercial stops, and estimated land and construction costs.

Other items considered included improvements to adjoining frontage roads and other local roads. In addition to the matrix, conceptual site plans were prepared to determine building, parking lot, and overall site layout, and to visualize the impact of the rest area on the interstate highway and other topographic features. Required ramp configurations and acceleration/deceleration lengths were analyzed for each site as well.

A second interim report was included relating to the architectural pre-programming of the rest area buildings and facilities. This included relationship diagrams, volume studies and preliminary costs. Both reports were then used by MoDOT to evaluate the three possible locations for a relocated rest area.

A subsequent study provided further analysis of one site with particular appropriateness for a potential public/private partnership to develop a rest area/truck plaza/motel/restaurant complex. Several alternative schematic site layouts were developed and construction costs compared.