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Work continues at Mel Price

March 17, 2023   The Telegraph

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ALTON — Workers and forms for concrete work could be seen Friday in the main lock at the Melvin Price Locks and Dam 26 in Alton as the three-phase project continues.

The work closed the main lock, slowing barge traffic, at the beginning of the year. The current project is expected to last about three months. Construction crews are working to replace the vertical lift gate in the main lock chamber.


Phase One is the construction of the actual lift gate; a $7.7 million contract was awarded to G&G Steel, an Alabama-based steel fabrication company, in September 2021.


The Phase Two modification of the adjacent piers and related work could be seen Friday. That portion of the job, consisting of a $9.9 million contract, was awarded to Alberici Constructors, Ltd.


The final phase of the project, scheduled to begin in January 2024, will be to install a new gate.


This the first time a gate on the 1,200-foot main lock has been replaced since the dam became operational in 1989. River traffic currently is being directed through the auxiliary lock at the site until this phase of the project is complete.