by Alan McArthur
Changes are on the way for the Hwy. 9 corridor through Parkville.
During Tuesday's Parkville Board of Aldermen meeting, Kirk Rome, public works director, announced the city has received $135,000 in a reimbursement grant from the Missouri Department of Transportation for a beautification project near downtown.
Rome said that depending on the cost of the materials, the improvements could include new landscaping and street lighting along the highway from the White Alloe Bridge to the Park University entrance.
The project would also include bollards installed along the bridge between the sidewalk and the roadway. A new sidewalk would be connected from the bridge to the existing sidewalk around the fountain next to the train depot.
Another part of the project would be the installation of poles to allow for the display of banners over the roadway near the train depot and the installation of a new monument sign at the eastern city limits.
According to Rome, the total cost for the project is estimated to be around $180,000. MoDOT would then reimburse the city for $135,000, leaving the city with a local match of $45,000.
Rome told the board he anticipates having several public meetings in the future to receive input on the proposed improvements. The final plans will be established later this year with construction beginning in the spring of 2014.
Another project along Hwy. 9 is a proposed trail to connect the Parkville Commons development to the downtown area.
Rome said the trail is planned to follow Hwy. 9 from the Hwy. 45 intersection along the east side of the highway to near where the YMCA is, before crossing Hwy. 9. The trail would then follow the small creek behind Miller's Landscape and Lawn Care to connect with Honor Lane.
The city received a grant for $450,000 in 2011 and two weeks ago received an extension to still receive the grant money as long as it is obligated by May 2014. Rome said the trail project would be more challenging because the city will have to receive right-of-way from landowners in order to construct the trail.
Rome said a later phase to the project, which is not currently in the works, would include constructing sidewalks from Honor Lane to connect to the downtown.
The trail will consist of a 10 foot wide paved path for walking and biking. The project was originally supposed to begin construction in the summer of 2012.
Sean Ackerson, interim city administrator and community development director, told the board the Highway 45 Phase C project has received $3,163,740 in cost-sharing funds from MoDOT in 2016.
The Phase C project would widen Hwy. 45 from the roundabout at K Highway to Interstate 435.
Ackerson said that of the total cost for the project, estimated to be $12.05 million, all but a local match of $1.5 million currently has funding.
During the last meeting, Ackerson told the board that if the Platte County Transportation Sales Tax of 3/8 cent passed, the city could use those funds to pay for the city's portion of the highway widening.
Ackerson told the board two weeks ago that the city is estimated to receive $1.6 to $1.8 million over the next 10 years from the tax.
The tax was approved by voters on Tuesday with 57 percent of voters approving the extension of the sales tax.