COLUMBIA - The Federal Highway Administration and the Missouri Department of Transportation have approved the final environmental document for the East Columbia Environmental Impact Statement (EC-EIS). The study document details how proposed roadway improvements in the area between Interstate 70 south to New Haven Road, and U.S. 63 east to Route Z, could impact the natural and man-made environment.The Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) must now go through a comment period to allow the public to review the final document.The EC-EIS was prepared to address the following critical elements that define the project's purpose and need: 1) Address traffic congestion and safety concerns, 2) Complete the major highway linkages between eastern Boone County and Columbia, and 3) Improve access to eastern Columbia. The document's "Notice of Availability" will be published in the Federal Register on December 18, 2009, beginning the public comment period that will run through January 18, 2010. The study's Final EIS will be available for review at the following locations in the mid-Missouri area:
An electronic version of the document will be available December 18, 2009 on the study Web site, www.eastcolumbiaeis.com.After the comment period closes, MoDOT will address any substantive public and agency comments by publishing a "Record of Decision" that marks the conclusion of the study. The Record of Decision will explain the study's findings and any commitments made as a result of the study.There is currently no funding to construct the improvements proposed in the study. Should funding become available, the completed document assures that MoDOT could move quickly to start design and construction. For more information about the study or for other transportation-related matters, please call 1-888-ASK-MoDOT (275-6636) or log onto www.modot.org/central. You can also follow MoDOT's Central District on Twitter at https://twitter.com/MoDOT_Central.