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The Champ Clark Bridge, built in 1928, is part of the U.S. Route 54 corridor and spans the Mississippi River connecting Louisiana, Missouri with the state of Illinois.

HANNIBAL – Hannibal High School’s interpretive panel design won the STEM Challenge at last night’s award ceremony held at the Twin Pike YMCA in Louisiana, MO. The winning team’s panel will be constructed in Louisiana’s River View Park upon completion of the demolition of the existing bridge.

“Hannibal’s proposal incorporates lattice beams, gusset plates, rivets and a plaque from the existing bridge into their interpretative panel design, documenting the significance of the historic bridge,” said Champ Clark Bridge Project Director Keith Killen.

Science Technology Engineering Math (STEM) has recently been prevalent in local schools. The purpose of STEM is to familiarize students and encourage them to pursue occupations within these fields of study. The new Champ Clark Bridge team, made up of engineers from the Missouri Department of Transportation, Illinois Department of Transportation, and Massman Construction Company, invited students from area schools to a competition to design an interpretive panel to help preserve the historic bridge that is being replaced.

Schools that participated in the competition included Louisiana, Bowling Green, Pike Lincoln Technical Center, Pittsfield and Hannibal.  

“All five teams did an outstanding job of researching the history and importance of the historic bridge and each provided a unique proposal for the interpretative panel,” Killen said.

“Since the interpretative panel will use pieces from the historic bridge, it will not be constructed until the new bridge is completed and the historic bridge is removed,” he added.

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