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 Just a few feet is all that's left to connect the new Mississippi River bridge. 

Crews are putting in that last piece today (Thursday). The Missouri Department of Transportation sayscrews will spend much of the day today laying two steel girders on the upstream and downstream sides of the bridge.   They are each 10-feet long and 6-feet high.

Spectators are invited to watch from an old pumphouse at Mullanphy just east of Broadway, through the flood wall.  http://www.newriverbridge.org/documents/viewingplatform.pdf.

Friday at 9:00am, contractors will start installing a 30-thousand pound floor beam that will go between the two edge girders. The bridge will be connected, but it will not be finished.  Engineers say there is still a lot of work to be done if the bridge is to open on schedule by early next year.

Officials urge anyone who comes to keep the roads and bike trails clear.

 Map to the pumphouse:  http://www.newriverbridge.org/documents/viewingplatform.pdf.

US new home sales jump to highest level in 5 years

Wednesday, 24 July 2013 09:06 Published in National News

WASHINGTON (AP) - Americans snapped up new homes in June at the fastest pace in five years, a sign the housing recovery is strengthening.

   The Commerce Department says sales rose 8.3 percent last month to a seasonally adjusted pace of 497,000. That's up from 459,000 in May, which was revised lower.

   While sales are still below the 700,000 pace consistent with healthy markets, they have risen 38 percent in the past 12 months. That's the biggest annual gain since January 1992.

   Housing has helped drive economic growth at a time when other parts of the economy have languished. While new-home sales make up only a small part of the market, each home built creates an average of three new jobs and spurs more spending at furniture and home supply stores.

   

 

  The manufacturer of the Plan B One Step morning-after contraceptive has been granted exclusive rights by the FDA to market their drug over-the-counter without age restrictions. The decision was released earlier this week.

   The Food and Drug Administration approved Teva Pharmaceuticals' Plan B One Step for over the counter sale...no prescription or proof of age required.  In its decision, the FDA granted a three year period during which Teva can sell its' single tablet product exclusively on pharmacy shelves, while generic drugs will still require a prescription for young women 16 and younger.

   Most metro St. Louis pharmacies carry Teva's Plan B, which is a two-pill dosage and some already have the Plan B One Step in the pharmacy. The FDA decision will now move that product on to the store shelves.

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