Cape planning for growth on Sprigg Street down the road

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Sprigg Street stands to benefit from the city of Cape Girardeau's new comprehensive plan.

Recommendations include extending Sprigg Street north, from Lexington Avenue to Cape Rock Drive, according to Martha Brown, the city's planner. More importantly, it offers some hope for South Cape residents.

Brown said the plan calls for creating a Southern Community Development District, "which will help stabilize the whole area and Sprigg is a main part of that neighborhood," she said.

Once the district is established, she said, it would support rebuilding retail shopping along the street as well as some landscaping.

Perhaps more important, the district will allow the city to pursue funding to "help arrange low-interest loans for people to fix up their properties and help that whole area beef up and redevelop," Brown said.

In the meantime, the city will continue to do routine maintenance on the road, according to Geoff Dial, special projects coordinator for the city's public works department, and city engineer Kelly Green.

Dial said repairs on South Sprigg Street, which included replacing 7-inch layers of cement with 10-inch slabs to accommodate heavy truck traffic destined for Buzzi Unicem, the city's transfer station or the Southeast Missouri Port Authority, are nearly complete. South Sprigg Street was closed in January to allow for sinkhole-related repairs.

He said the city would be advertising for a Sprigg Street asphalt overlay bids sometime in the next week. The project would resurface the road leading to the Cape LaCroix Street bridge and use a pumpable concrete to reinforce Cape LaCroix Creek banks as soon as the water recedes, he said.

Green said plans for the fourth Transportation Trust Fund, a five-year, half-percent sales tax that funds road-related projects, are just beginning and no specific projects have been identified yet.

Without question, Sprigg Street is "a very important corridor," Brown said.

Sprigg Street is one of the few straight, uninterrupted north-south routes through the city and reflects a cross-section of people, industry, business, culture and history.

"It's part of the downtown area, next to the historic districts and part of the Haarig Commercial District" in the 600 block of Good Hope Street and 300 block of South Sprigg Street, she said.

For the full text of the city's comprehensive plan, visit www.cityofcapegirardeau.org/pdfs/COMPREH....

pmcnichol@semissourian.com

335-6611, extension 127

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