(Joplin, MO) – City of Joplin and Jasper County officials were notified this week of a $4 million State of Missouri award toward the Zora Street Improvements. This grant was in partnership with the State of Missouri Department of Transportation and Jasper County.
The project will improve Zora from Range Line to MO-249, including a large truck-friendly roundabout at the intersection of Zora and Duquesne. The roadway section from Range Line to Duquesne will be an improved two-lane roadway with curb and gutter and a storm sewer system. Additionally, the roadway section between Duquesne and MO-249 will be an improved two-lane roadway with paved shoulders on each side of the roadway.
The total construction cost of this project is estimated to be $9 million, of which $4 million will be funded by this grant award. The remaining $5 million will be funded through Joplin’s voter-approved 3/8-cent capital improvement sales tax. This road improvement was a top project identified by the citizens in the renewal of this tax.
Without this grant award, the sales tax would have only been able to fund the roundabout, along with the road improvements from Duquesne to MO-249. By leveraging our local tax dollars, the Governor’s Transportation Grant award will allow Zora to be improved from Range Line Road to MO-249. With MO-249, this thoroughfare has become a major corridor not only for Joplin businesses and residents, but for the entire region. These improvements will help ensure a safer travel route from one of Joplin’s busiest roads to the Interstate.
City Manager Nick Edwards expressed gratitude, stating “this was an extremely competitive program, but we had support of the project from the City of Webb City, Missouri Southern State University, and area businesses in the adjacent industrial park areas, including Don’s Cold Storage and Consolidated Freight Incorporated. The Joplin Area Chamber of Commerce was also very helpful, given economic development was a major factor considered in the scoring of the submitted projects and the award of the funds.”
For background on the Grant program:
The purpose of the Governor’s Transportation Cost Share Program is to build partnerships with local communities to pool efforts and resources to deliver road and bridge projects. This program is funded with a $75 million General Revenue appropriation from the General Assembly. Twenty percent (20%) is set-aside for projects that demonstrate economic development. The Cost Share Committee works cooperatively with the Missouri Department of Economic Development (DED) to select projects with the greatest economic benefit to the State. The Committee consists of the Chief Engineer, Chief Financial Officer, Assistant Chief Engineer, and two members selected by the Director. The projects are then recommended for approval by the Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission (MHTC).You can find a list of the other award winners by visiting the Program website linked below.
Tony Robyn, Assistant City Manager
City of Joplin
417.624.0820, ext. 1203