By Autumn Garrett, Editorial Intern
Historic Northeast residents had the opportunity to give input on the street improvement project at Eighth Street and Woodland Avenue last week on a Zoom call with the City’s Capital Projects Division.
The Capital Projects Division manages key construction projects for the City of Kansas City, Mo. Public Works Department, helping bring process improvements and standardized practices to the management of street, bridge and building projects throughout the City.
The boundaries of the project are Woodland Avenue to Paseo Boulevard and Ninth Street to Independence Avenue.
“This is a project that is a part of the Choice Neighborhood Initiative, which is a $30 million grant provided by [the Department of Housing and Urban Development] (HUD), the City of Kansas City, Missouri, is co-granting with the housing authority of Kansas City,” said Chase Johnson, Project Manager of the City Planning and Development Department. “Basically it’s kind of a three pronged approach for the overall grant. So there’s a housing component, there’s a people component, and then there’s a neighborhood component which was paved in the Woodland Improvement Project as a part of that Neighborhood Improvement component of the overall grant.”
Johnson went on to describe the type of improvements that are being added to Eighth Street and Woodland Avenue.
“This project is really about improving the corridors, revitalizing some of the streetscape, making it a more of a sense of place instead of that quasi industrial area,” Johnson said. “Upgrading sidewalks, lighting, signage, street furniture, things of that nature, and recently provided connectivity for pedestrians and new residents in the area to traverse to the Woodland school or Samuel U. Rodgers or just the general area and the vicinity.”
The project is still in the design phase and there have been multiple meetings with the community to obtain input from around the neighborhood to create opportunities for affected stakeholders, residents, businesses and those traveling through the Eighth and Woodland area to offer feedback on the project.
Construction for the project is anticipated to start in mid- to late-2022, the intent being to finish the design by January this year and proceed to advertise the project.
“Plan is to [advertise] during the winter so we can get contractors lined up and begin work in March /April of 2022,” said Mario Vasquez, Project Manager of the Public Works Department. “From a construction standpoint, I see this being about a three to four month construction, mainly because we have two corridors and we have to maintain traffic in both directions, we’ve got to maintain traffic in at least one direction. We need to do a little bit of coordination with that project to make sure that our construction schedules are not creating a headache for the residents of the area.”
The team will continue to work with the community throughout the improvements being done to upgrade Eighth Street and Woodland Avenue. For more information about the project and the Capital Project Division go to kcmo.gov.