Public Gives Feedback on Proposed Scott Blvd and I-70 Connection
COLUMBIA - Scott Boulevard could one day link up with I-70, and Columbia Public Works wants to know what residents think of the idea.
The city held a public hearing Thursday at Columbia's ARC. The hearing gave citizens an opportunity to learn more about the project and weigh in with both verbal and written comments on the proposal.
The proposal would extend Scott Boulevard north to Stadium/Route E and construct an interchange at I-70 between Perche Creek and Stadium Boulevard.
Project Manager Shawn Leight presented the findings of a study the city conducted that measured the economic impact of the proposed interchange. He says it will help relieve the southwest neighborhood of traffic congestion.
"When you look at the heart of the city, there are several interchanges along I-70. When you get out to the west side all the traffic flows through Stadium, so it's no wonder why Stadium Boulevard gets so congested. It also affects streets like Nifong and Grindstone as people try to find another way to travel east to west. By providing another connection over on this west side, the traffic from that part of the city can travel directly up to I-70, without having to mix with the commercial traffic around Stadium and through residential areas," said Leight.
The proposal the city prefers will partially or completely take down 53 homes along its path. Leight said those residents will be very important to the revision process.
"The next phase of the project would be the design phase of the project, and that is when there would be significant out reach to those as far as if there is going to be takings of homes and that kind of thing. That is when those types of issues will get worked through," said Leight.
The project received funding from the city to conduct the environmental study. The study was the second step in what Leight says is a five step process. The project has no future funding for the following design, aquisition and construction phases.
Leight says the Columbia Public Works website will post comment cards for residents to fill out. He encourages honest and detailed feedback so the city can keep an accurate record of how citizens feel about the potential change.