The road from the Nebraska City bridge to I-29 was hoped to be open Sunday or Monday.
Returning flood water placed a temporary hold on the return of traffic to Iowa Highway 2 from the Missouri River bridge at Nebraska City to the 1-29 corridor Monday morning.
Austin Yates of the Iowa Department of Transportation said that a project to establish a head-to-head traffic configuration in the west bound lanes of Highway 2 has been well ahead of schedule. The original time frame had a road-opening date of Aug. 15.
The hope, Yates said, was that traffic could flow beginning Sunday, July 28, or Monday, July 29.
Unfortunately, new water returned to the repaired road. That doesn’t mean another large scale repair, at this time, however.
Yates said work is being done to divert the water while the operation is being conscious of the other land uses in the area. When a water solution is reached, the traffic will be allowed on the road for the first time since a May high water event, the second wave of the 2019 flood, caused closure of temporary measures which had established limited traffic mobility in both directions.
The current work on the west bound lanes, Yates said, was to get a good job done quickly and get traffic going on a road that has importance both to the local area and the larger regional area.
Once traffic is established, Yates said the Iowa DOT will begin a project on the east bound lanes that will repair flood damage, install bridge structures east of the Missouri River bridge and improve the levee structure at the Missouri River bridge. Work on the east side with the bridge structures is slated to be completed late this year, although that schedule could be impacted by weather and high water events.
Once the east lanes are completed, the same process would take place on the west lanes. The existing levee system at the bridge will remain in place until the entire project is completed. At that time, the old levee would be taken out.