Springfield City Council plans new trail connections and sidewalks

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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3/KSPR) - Springfield City Council members unanimously approved an ordinance that will create new trail connections and sidewalks, earlier this week.

There are five separate projects within the ordinance, two of which are in the Galloway Village Neighborhood. The first of the Galloway projects is a sidewalk connection for Greenwood Street to the Galloway Trail. That project also includes a new traffic signal at the intersection. The second Galloway project in the ordinance is some reconstruction for a portion of trail between Republic Road and Sequiota Park.

The third and fourth projects in the ordinance are near the Fassnight Creek Greenway. One will work to connect Jefferson Avenue to Phelps Grove Park, while the other will build a half a mile of new sidewalk on Luster Avenue from Sunset Drive to Seminole Street.

The final project outlined in the ordinance is a new sidewalk for neighborhoods south of Farmers Park. The new sidewalk would travel down Harvard Avenue from Swallow Street to Aladdin Court, measuring about a half a mile.

City Traffic Engineer Eric Claussen said the total cost of the projects will be around $750,000. Nearly $600,000 of the price tag will be covered by the Surface Transportation Block Grant from the Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission. The city allocated the grant money to the five projects at Monday night's meeting. The remaining $150,000 will be paid by the city.

Claussen went on to explain why the federal grant was a great opportunity to get these projects started. "A lot of these, or especially the sidewalk connections, were ones that we've heard about quite a bit from the community," he said. "Because of the complexity with grading and storm water concerns, this is really the perfect opportunity to be able to address some of those."

Lastly, Claussen reminded the public this is a great opportunity to make the community more pedestrian-friendly. "Whether that be for just somebody traveling within their neighborhood or a safe route to get to school, whenever we can get people off the streets and onto a secured sidewalk system it's obviously a benefit to the community," he said.

As far as a timeline for the projects go, Claussen said they have to have the grant funds divided up and allocated to the specific projects by September of 2020.