Construction Frustrates Neighbors

9 years 7 months 3 weeks ago February 06, 2007 Feb 6, 2007 Tuesday, February 06 2007 Tuesday, February 06, 2007 6:43:53 PM CST in News

The proposed Stoneridge Village Development is planned along Missouri Boulevard and would include a new road, Kohl's department store and more. But, the construction is already disturbing the peace for the people who live along South Ten Mile Drive.

"If this and that would happen to come down.. my whole roof's gonna cave in right here," area resident Scott Surface said.

Surface's home shows the consequences of nearby rock blasting that started in November, and he felt the blasts again Sunday.

"They blasted and I mean it literally shook my walls, shook me standing on the ground," Surface explained.

His house has cracks in walls, broken windows, and cracks in his driveway that he attributes to the rock blasting a short distance away.  And he's not happy about it.  The quiet street off of Missouri Boulevard is used to blasting at the rock quarry nearby, but the preparations for new businesses brought the blasting closer to home.

"They told us that we would feel no more blasts from them blasting than we feel from the quarry which is right behind them and when they blast my house shakes," Surface said.

Other residents say they also have damage, but the excavation company that is blasting the rocks refuses to talk to the home owners.  Residents setup a meeting with the owner of the company in the past, but then he didn't show up.  They called him about it later and they say he told them he didn't care about the damage and to sue him if they wanted.  But the home owners don't want to get into a legal battle they say; they want to settle this peacefully.  Now, they're looking to the City Council to help them resolve these issues and fix their homes. 

Another problem the residents of South Ten Mile Drive have is with the proposed road changes.  The addition of a new road will completely alter how the neighbors get in and out of their street and that worries many of them.  The plan will create stoneridge Parkway which will connect Missouri Boulevard to the new shopping centers.  This will be a four-lane road with additional right and left turn lanes.  Currently, South Ten Mile Drive connects to Missouri Boulevard, but with the addition of the new road it won't.  Instead South Ten Mile Drive will connect to the new road--Stoneridge Parkway--and a traffic light is not an option because it would be too close to the Missouri Blvd-Stoneridge Parkway intersection signal.  Residents would have to cross five lanes of traffic in order to make a right turn onto Missouri Boulevard, and that concerns them with the probable heavy traffic congestion.

"I'd rather travel the extra distance and be safe than travel a short distance and not be safe," resident Lee Debroeck said.

Neighbors propose moving access to the new road farther away from the Missouri Boulevard intersection--farther down Stoneridge Parkway.  That way the access road is farther from the worst traffic congestion, and they could add a traffic light for safety if necessary.  City planners say they are listening to residents' concerns.

"I understand the neighbors' concerns and wanting to know how the development will affect them," City Planner Janice McMillan said.

Residents stressed they do not have a problem with the store, nor do they have a problem with any of the other development. Their only concerns are with the safety of their homes and driving in and out of their neighborhood.

There is another neighborhood meeting for interested residents Tues., Feb. 13, from 4-6 p.m. at the Hyde Park Building.  Community Development officials, City Council members, and MoDOT officials will be there to help residents sort through these problems.

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