Construction of the Avenue of the Columns starts Monday

Wednesday, July 18, 2012 | 4:57 p.m. CDT; updated 10:49 a.m. CST, Monday, November 5, 2012

COLUMBIA — Construction on the historic Avenue of the Columns will cause temporary lane restrictions on Broadway, Seventh, and Eighth streets beginning Monday at 7 a.m.

The work should be completed by fall if the weather permits, according to a news release from the City of Columbia's Public Works Department.

Construction on the Avenue of the Columns was approved by the Columbia City Council in February, along with a list of other improvement projects, according to previous Missourian reporting.

In 2000, the Avenue of the Columns Committee convened to re-examine the goals of the Eighth Street Beautification Committee, which dissolved once work on the Boone County Courthouse Square was completed in 1997, Mary Wilkerson, chair of the Avenue of the Columns Committee, said.

Since then, the Avenue of the Columns committee, made up of local citizens, has been dedicated to implementing a "master plan" to revamp Eighth Street whenever an opportunity arises, Wilkerson said.

She said the committee works on its plan when other construction is being done in the area.

Renovations of Columbia’s City Hall that were completed in 2010 brought up the prospect of some work on the Avenue of the Columns, she said.

The total cost of the project is $914,100 and is funded by the city and donations, Steven Sapp, public information specialist for the Public Works Department, said.

The first of the four Downtown Streetscape phases, will focus on the strip of Eighth Street between the parking lot entrance at Landmark Bank to the center line stripe on Broadway Street, Sapp said.  

Each phase includes numerous elements, such as sidewalk replacement and adding tree grates to plant trees, he said.

Motorists and pedestrians are advised to either use extreme caution in the area, or use an alternative route when possible.

Supervising editor is Celia Darrough.

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Glenn Rice July 19, 2012 | 9:24 a.m.

Wow, almost a million dollars to prettify one downtown street, while much more needed and much less expensive stormwater and other infrastructure needs go unmet.

(Report Comment)
Ellis Smith July 19, 2012 | 10:56 a.m.

Well, Glenn, I can only assume you are unfamiliar with an old proverb that says it is always money well spent to put up a good front. Hogs look more attractive when dressed in Paris gowns. :) Yes, storm water would be a good place to start spending more money.

(Report Comment)

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