An interstate running through downtown? I’d cap that

Local officials met yesterday to mull a plan to overlay Interstate 670 with open, green space, stitch together two disparate areas of downtown — the Crossroads and the Power & Light District — and eliminate one of downtown’s least pedestrian-friendly walkways.

Bob Langenkamp, assistant director of city planning, reported results of an 18-month feasibility study, which made it’s pro-cap recommendation to the committee. He used phrases like “activate the street level” to discuss a pedestrian link between Bartle Hall and the Sprint Center.

Truman Road, which is currently straddles I-670, could potentially be shifted, and Langenkamp laid out three alternatives.

  • Move the eastbound lane next to the westbound lane, which would tie in the Power & Light District directly to the green space.
  • Move the eastbound lane next to the westbound, which would open up a developable corridor along the southern edge of the green way.
  • Leave it as is and have a park between the two directions of Truman Road.

Langenkamp expected the project to

cost $140-160 million. City Hall staff said there’s a potential for

federal funds for the project, but details were pretty scant.

Any potential building project would coincide with MoDOT’s regular replacement interval for the bridges that span I-670. Langenkamp said MoDOT has indicated it will pledge the cost of the bridge replacement project to the overall construction fund.

Planning such a large project and actually building it would take about a decade, Langenkamp said.

The Planning and Zoning committee asked a few questions before unanimously voting to pass the recommendation along to the full City Council, but leaving the Truman Road question vague and open to future discussion.

Rendering courtesy of City Planning and Development Department

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