Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Project goes south on North Main

City council members to meet with North Main residents Feb. 15

By Todd Morehead

The Elmwood, Cottontown, and Earlewood communities of North Main Street house one of the greatest concentrations of middleclass residents in Columbia alongside Shandon and Rosewood. Many feel the historic area should be a feather in the cap of city officials who have invested themselves so heavily in the revitalization of downtown. Yet some homeowners in the North Main area worry that Columbia City Council may welsh on a streetscaping project they’ve been promising for years.
“Elmwood has long been neglected because it is located between two [city council] districts and not in the heart of a single member district,” says Elmwood area resident Chris Barczak. According to him, city council members should look at what is healthy for a city as a whole rather than district members attempting to pacify their individual districts.
“That’s the problem with single-member districts,” he said. “They should represent the city as a whole.”
City Council will vote soon on potential funding for the beautification of the 1.2 miles of North Main Street between Elmwood Ave. and Parkside Drive. The beautification plan could include landscaping, resurfacing the road, burying utility lines, putting in new street lights, traffic signals, crosswalks and sidewalks. Sam Davis and other council members will present an update on the status of the project and take questions from the community Feb. 15 at Reformation Lutheran Church on the corner of River Drive and Union Street. Residents of the area are encouraged to attend, they said.