I-44 in 2007: An extra lane is born.
You were a fifth lane, but never a fifth wheel. No far from it. We enjoyed having you around.
Sure, it was scary (and exhilarating!) that first time we drove you back in 2007 -- the year they squeezed you onto the blacktop to compensate for the entire shutdown of Interstate 64. (Or as we like to say Highway 40).
For a while you made us feel like we were in that chariot race in Ben Hur
. But eventually we all learned to navigate you.
Who knows? Perhaps you even made us all better drivers. At the very
least, you gave us a new-found respect for eighteen-wheelers. You know,
the big rigs that you funneled dangerously close to our side-view
Alas, we knew
it would never last. The Federal Highway Administration made sure of
that when they granted Missouri a temporary permit to use you. This weekend MoDOT will take you away. They're planning to
re-stripe eastbound 44 back to its original four lanes this weekend. The
westbound lanes will be re-striped soon thereafter.
lane, parting is such sweet sorrow (though merging should soon get a lot easier). It was fun while it lasted.