James Baughn was the webmaster of seMissourian.com and its sister newspapers for 20 years. On the side, he maintained even more sites, including Bridgehunter.com, LandmarkHunter.com, TheCapeRock.com, and Humorix. Baughn passed away in 2020 while doing one of the things he loved most: hiking in Southeast Missouri. Here is an archive of his writing about hiking and nature in our area.
City park to double in size
Posted Friday, July 12, 2013, at 11:00 AM
Work is currently underway to enlarge one of Cape Girardeau's city parks. When finished, the park will be more than twice its original size.
Yes, it's true. But don't get too excited.
I'm talking about Murtaugh Park, a grassy median in front of the Red House Interpretive Center. This patch of ground separates Aquamsi Street from S. Main Street.
Most people wouldn't even consider this to be a park -- if they notice it at all. However, it does feature a large marker clearly designating it as Murtaugh Park, in honor of Rev. James A. Murtaugh.
This week, the pavement of Aquamsi Street was ripped up between William and Merriwether streets. The old roadbed will be replaced by grass and added to Murtaugh Park, more than doubling the width of this public land.
Based on some back-of-the-envelope calculations, the park will expand from approximately 0.28 acres to just over 0.60 acres.
This was all made possible after Main Street was switched to two-way traffic a few years ago. As a result, the portion of Aquamsi Street in front of the Red House became redundant. Removing the street will cut down on driver confusion, although it won't eliminate the crazy intersection with William Street.
Now if the city could figure out a way to expand Doggett Park...
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