A second option would be to utilize the existing ramps that exit to 3rd Street, which would allow the bridge structure to be removed south of 1st Street. The current ramps are wide enough to accommodate two lanes of traffic in each direction, albeit this would require a new pedestrian / bicycle bridge to be constructed just east of the current ramps.
While providing less opportunity for new development, this option creates a mini “boulevard” centered around 3rd Street which could be activated for pedestrian activities. In this option we illustrate how the current dog park located between 3rd Street and 5th Street west of Route 9 could be relocated to the northeast corner of the new Route 9 and Independence Avenue intersection.
Boulevard concept on Route 9
Northbound Route 9 with boulevard: Press the play button to view a 3D rendering of this concept
Southbound Route 9 with boulevard: Press the play button to view a 3D rendering of this concept
Route 9 with boulevard, looking north
Route 9 with boulevard at 3rd Street crossing, looking northwest
Route 9 with boulevard at 3rd Street crossing, looking southwest
Boulevard with pedestrian and bicycle pathways, looking north towards downtown
This option is estimates to cost between $11.5 million and $12.6 million, including soft costs (survey, design, engineering). Utility relocation costs are not included, nor the cost to acquire property from the Missouri Department of Transportation for redevelopment. If combined with the Independence Avenue Connection, the total project costs would rise to $17.7 million to $19.4 million. As you will recall, the Independence Avenue Connection must be made for this to be a viable option.
It is worth noting that, by utilizing the existing ramp bridges, this project costs nearly $2 million less than the Eastern Alignment option. That said, the cost does not assume the full development of the park in the Boulevard, which would add additional costs.