By CAROLYN SZCZEPANSKI
Traffic reporters have been sowing dread among area commuters for weeks now, warning Kansas City residents to avoid the Paseo Bridge at all costs. This week, the Missouri Department of Transportation started a massive construction project that will replace the old bridge that carries interstates 35 and 29 over the Big Muddy. The project won’t be complete until 2011, turning the river crossing into a headache of closed lanes and construction equipment for years to come.
The helpful folks at MoDOT, though, wanted to make sure that any ignorant visitor or obstinate Northlander knows what they're in for as they head south on I-35 into downtown Kansas City. So they put up a billboard, complete with bold lettering and bright-orange, traffic tape. But this state agency, apparently, has a poor grasp of human relations and effective marketing.
They didn’t put up a nice image of a friendly guy in a hard hat asking motorists to be patient while their tax dollars are at work. Nope, they suggest anyone who dares to tread near the old Paseo Bridge is, well, pretty darn stupid. So, when you’re chugging along at 10 miles-per-hour cursing the construction, try to swallow your road rage by chewing on this little mockery from MoDOT.