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Joplin City Council approves contract to help with widening of Maiden Lane

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Joplin City Council has approved a contract that will help in the widening of Maiden Lane.
The council approved the contract of $294,959.20 with Olsonn and Associates to help finish all final steps prior to beginning construction.
Due to increased traffic flow, the construction project will widen Maiden Lane to five lanes of traffic between 9th Street and 32nd Street.
"As the community grows, increased traffic loads obviously start clogging up our streets and highways," said Nick Heatherly, Director of Public Works for the City of Joplin.  "It's just like your blood vessels, the more that is trying to go through there, it gets clogged and you have to clean it out."
Heatherly says street repairs are also included in the project.
"There will be sidewalks, new curbs and gutters, storm water inlets will be fixed, replaced and relocated, it's a pretty comprehensive job," he said.
The project has an impact on some businesses in the area, especially those located on intersections.  The City has made some offers to those businesses to ease the impact.
"The company is not happy with the offer that's been made to us," said Mark McCaffrey, owner of Grande Tire.  "It will affect our business and that's why we have appealed the offer."
The total estimated cost of the project is $3,853,912.88.
Funds will come from the previously passed 2004 3/8-cent Capital Improvements Sales Tax and recent funding from a TIGER grant.
Officials expect the construction process to begin soon.
"As soon as we get everything ready on the right of way, then we'll be ready to start construction," Heatherly said. "We've been waiting for the weather to break as well, so we're about ready to go."
Officials expect a substantial portion of the project to be completed by the end of the year.
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