JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (KMIZ) -
Parts of Interstate 70 in Mid-Missouri could expand to three lanes under a budget plan put forward by Gov. Mike Parson.
The governor discussed the "once in a lifetime opportunity" at his annual State of the State address Wednesday afternoon at the Capitol. Parson suggested the state spend $859 million to widen the interstate to three lanes.
"To those who say we can't afford it, I say we can't afford not to," Parson said in his speech.
The governor's plan would expand three sections of I-70 to three lanes. One of them would expand the road from the Highway 40 exit in Boone County to the Route Z exit. Budget director Dan Haug said the state would also expand 20 miles of I-70 around Wentzville in the St. Louis suburbs and another section of I-70 in the Kansas City suburbs. Haug said the project would not use money from the federal infrastructure law.
Watch Parson's speech in the player
Talk of expanding I-70 had already come up before the legislative session started. State Sen. Bill Eigel (R-St. Charles) proposed setting aside 2% of the state's general revenue every year for the next 10 years.
Eigel said the dedicated construction fund could make I-70 a four-lane highway.