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First-of-its-Kind Construction Project Proposed for Joplin - KOAM TV 7

First-of-its-Kind Construction Project Proposed for Joplin

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Joplin, MO -

A monumental project could bring some major renovations to some Joplin neighborhoods.  It's one item on the agenda tonight for the Joplin City Council.  

Michelle Whitehead's days are looking up.

Whitehead says, "Should be good!"

Every time Whitehead has looked down, she has seen roads and sidewalks near her home in bad shape.

"I ride bikes with my niece and nephew.  They're 11 and nine, and we have to take the alley a lot of times," says Whitehead.

Big changes are planned for Whitehead's neighborhood; a large type of project that has not been seen in Joplin since before the 2011 tornado.

"This is the first neighborhood project of this size and scope that we've done," says Dan Salisbury, Assistant Public Works Director for the City of Joplin.

The City plans on doing infrastructure renovations from Jackson Avenue to Main Street, and from West 19th Street to West 15th Street (look at the map included with this story).  More than 127,000 square feet of sidewalks will be replaced.  More than 18,000 square feet of sidewalks ramps will be installed.  Roads will be resurfaced, and fences will be replaced.  Some driveways will get redone, and sewer system components will be renovated.

This only scratches the surface of everything planned, though.  The full, itemized list of this project, plus some other details, are enough to fill 224 pages.

"Where is the contractor going to start?  We never know where they're going to start until we get them hired and they get their plan of attack put together," says Salisbury.

This more than $3 million project is completely funded by federal money for post-tornado recovery.

"People are going to experience orange cones, but also many of them have been waiting very, very patiently," says Salisbury.

And people like Whitehead are willing to continue being patient, now that they've seen some sort of end in sight.

"For sure!  And just make sure that's all safe.  As long as they've got it blocked-off good, should be good," says Whitehead.

City workers say if city council approves the project, construction can begin anytime.  City workers hope to have this project completed by the end of this summer, and say future projects to renovate neighborhoods are in the works.  

Neighborhood meetings will be planned to go over plans with residents.

Click here to learn about other future post-tornado recovery projects planned.  These projects are also funded by federal money for post-tornado recovery.

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