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Traffic snarls on Highway 65 between Branson and Ozark are expected to improve ahead of the 4th of July holiday.
MoDOT says sometime this week, the two bridges that have been slow spots in the road will be opened to all four lanes.
Soon after July fourth, nighttime resurfacing will start, which should be wrapped up by the Fall.
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Traffic on Route 65 between Ozark and Branson will be restored to four lanes during the week of June 25 prior to the July 4th holiday, the Missouri Department of Transportation said.
Traffic has been reduced to one lane in each direction and shifted to the northbound side of Route 65 since early April to make major repairs to two bridges -- the Woods Fork bridge about 2-1/2 miles south of Route EE at Ozark and the Camp Creek bridge near Busiek State Forest about six miles south of Route EE.
Crews rebuilt the decks on the two bridges.
Beginning Wednesday, June 20, southbound Route 65 traffic will be shifted back to the southbound side of the road. However, one lane in each direction will remain closed to allow contractor crews to remove median crossovers and complete work on the southbound bridges.
Sometime during the week of June 25 -- the exact date will be announced closer to the opening -- the remaining northbound and southbound lanes will be opened to traffic at the two bridges.
Work still remains to be completed on the project which includes resurfacing all four lanes of Route 65 between the Ozark Mountain Highroad (Route 465) north of Branson and Christian County Route EE at Ozark.
The resurfacing work will be completed at night and will begin in early July. The work includes repairing dips in the pavement in areas. The patching work may cause slight bumps in the pavement until the roadway can be resurfaced.
Journagan Construction of Springfield is the prime contractor, doing the work for a low bid amount of $4.9 million.
Completion is scheduled for December 2012, although the contractor is working toward a late summer completion.
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