A threatened blockade of Highway 40/Interstate 64 in St. Louis last Thursday did not materialize after a group of minority contractors reached a deal with state highway officials and road builders.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported Friday that about 150 people attended a peaceful, early-morning rally on the south side of the highway.
Gov. Mel Carnahan and the Missouri Dept. of Transportation agreed to make a bigger investment in minority work force training and minority contractor outreach and support. Among other things, the agreement includes a training center in north St. Louis to recruit minority workers and prepare them for union apprenticeship programs in construction.
If the state does not follow through on the agreement, leaders of the minority contractor group MO-KAN say they will schedule another blockade. On July 12, the demonstrators shut down I-70 for about an hour during morning rush hour.