15th Street, Firetrucks, and Wildcat Park top Joplin city council discussion

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JOPLIN, Mo.–Leaders with the City of Joplin move forward with plans to expand the intersection at 15th and Rangeline.

Back in September, city council members voted to purchase property immediately east of the intersection with the intent of creating a smoother traffic flow from the light to the north entry of the Wal-Mart parking lot.

Now, the City is entering the next phase of the project.

Public Works Director David Hertzberg runs the details of the MHTC contract with the Joplin City Council

A cost-sharing agreement was approved by the city to split the price of the road expansion with the Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission. The cost will be split 50/50 with both parties paying out roughly $920,000.

The overall project will add a new right turn lane to the westbound route on 15th Street and convert the current strip into a second lane for through traffic. It will also make the intersection more pedestrian-friendly by providing sidewalks to the east side of 15th street along with adding call buttons to the crosswalks.

To view a map of the city’s expansion plans, click here.

Another hot topic of the night was the decision to purchase a brand new firetruck. According to fire chief, Jim Furgerson, the new truck will cost roughly $908,000, but the trade-in of a 2001 engine will bring the city’s pay-out down to about $883,000.

The new truck will be used on the west side of town–most likely either Station 2 (Junge & Schifferdecker) or Station 6 (West 32nd and South Central City Rd.). Staff are still deciding the best possible location.

Furgerson expects the engine to arrive sometime between February and March 2021.

And, city leaders had the first reading of an agreement with Wildcat Glades Friends Group. The non-profit that is looking to takeover the upkeep and upgrades to Wildcat Park.

The group hopes to make improvements to the park, including plans for a new education cottage. The next round of discussion for Wildcat Park will be at February 4 city council meeting.

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