Church leveled to make way for new road

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The church at the corner of John and Stewart streets is no more, having been demolished by city crews in preparation for the extension of Stewart to Roop street, a project four years in the making.

Harvey Brotzman, the city's senior transportation engineer, said Wednesday that the city will need to acquire "a couple" more properties, namely "slivers" of land near Moody and Roop streets. Once acquired, the job will be opened for bidding in the fall, he said.

Cost for the project " excluding the amount spent obtaining rights-of-way " is estimated at $5.6 million.

In addition to the First Christian Church's acre, and three homes that the city purchased and demolished for the extension, a portion of the parking lot of Pioneer High School on Corbett Street is needed to create the S-shaped road that will eventually connect with Moody Street, which will then be renamed Stewart Street.

"There will no longer be a Moody Street," said Brotzman.

Once the construction is complete, the city will turn over the church's existing parking lot in exchange for the high school parking lot.

Currently, motorists who use Stewart Street to drive north are stopped just after William Street and must make a series of turns onto small residential roads if they wish to avoid the traffic between the stoplights and traffic at Highway 50 East and Long Streets.

The extension aims to reduce north/south traffic on Roop and Carson streets.

Stewart Street will eventually run about two miles from Carson Street until it connects with Roop Street just past Dan Street.


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