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Crews reopen WB I-70 at 18th Street in KCMO

Posted at 3:31 PM, Jan 16, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-18 16:11:05-05

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Missouri Department of Transportation crews reopened westbound Interstate 70 at 18th Street Sunday afternoon after it closed Thursday following a deadly fire.

The outer lanes opened just after 3 p.m., but the center lane remains closed.

Traffic will continue to split at 18th Street for the foreseeable future, as it has not been determined when the center lane will reopen.

Originally, MoDOT told the public to expect the area to remain closed until Monday’s morning commute.

Reopening early was thanks “in part to exceptional planning, collaborative efforts and tireless work,” according to a MoDOT news release.

On Thursday, the fire happened in an encampment for people experiencing homelessness, and one person died as a result of the fire.

KCPD identified the victim Tuesday as 28-year-old Elizabeth Lindsey.

It also burned so hotly that officials had to investigate the structural damage to the interstate and bridge.

Inspection has determined the bridge suffered severe damage, primarily under the center lane. However, the long-term repair plan is not known at this time.