Citizens express concerns at I-70 meeting

Thursday, March 4, 2004 | 12:00 a.m. CST; updated 11:14 p.m. CDT, Saturday, July 5, 2008

The possibility of excessive exhaust fumes and traffic noise caused by the expansion of I-70 worried residents of the Parkade neighborhood Wednesday night.

"I think it is a huge concern," said Kory Kaufman, president of the Parkade Neighborhood Association and a member of the Improve I-70 Advisory Committee, about the possible noise.

Kaufman attended the meeting, which was held by the Missouri Department of Transportation.

"Once construction begins, are people going to be able to get access to their homes?" Kaufman said, speaking for residents.

Until money is available, no construction will begin, but residents say they feel uneasy when they see colored lines splitting their homes in half.

But the lines are not permanent. The potentially affected area might narrow once new maps are presented during the Advisory Committee meeting to be held March 18, said project manager Buddy Desai, who works for CH2M Hill, the engineering firm contracted by the department.

The Parkade neighborhood is in the area known as the "triplets," a series of three intersections so close they are being designed together. As of the last advisory committee meeting, two design alternatives remained for the triplets. By the meeting on March 18, either one-way frontage roads or collector-distributor roads will be used to connect access roads to the expanded I-70, creating one road plan for the heart of the I-70 corridor, Desai said.

This recommended preferred alternative is a conservative view of what the improvements could be, but is not final. Concerns are being addressed to decide where roads will go, but the specific effects will not be known until the designing phase of the project has begun. That phase will not begin, however, until the department receives funding, Desai said. And no one knows exactly when that will happen, he said.

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