A list of highly anticipated improvements will soon become reality in the Commercial Street Historic District as the City begins TIF-funded parking and placemaking projects and prepares for the rehabilitation of the Jefferson Avenue Footbridge.
Approved TIF funded projects
In August, City Council approved a budget adjustment allocating a total of $655,000 to support a slate of improvement projects in the Commercial Street Historic District.
Based on public input received at the annual Commercial Street Tax Increment Financing (TIF) public meeting in June, City staff recommended City Council allocate $290,000 of TIF funding and an additional $365,000 from previous-budgeted Public Works funds as cost-sharing to complete the following public improvements:
Directional Signage – $5,000
The City’s sign shop will produce and install street signage to help direct citizens and visitors from surrounding roadways to the historic district and public parking lots. Staff expects to install signage later this fall.
Public Parking Improvements – $595,000
Two public parking lots located at Pacific Street and Campbell Avenue and Pacific Street and Robberson Avenue will be redesigned, including new pavement, lighting, landscaping and irrigation improvements through a cost-share split between TIF funding and Public Works funds. Public Works anticipates the design of both parking lots to be under development this winter. Construction in early Summer.
Public Art – $40,000
Funding to purchase or commission two public art pieces and sponsor two temporary pieces for multiple years. City staff will work alongside C-Street stakeholders this fall to begin developing an Art Collection Plan for the district to help guide the future art selection process. The two temporary rotating pieces will be facilitated through Sculpture Walk Springfield.
Footbridge Plaza Schematic Design – $15,000
Funding to develop a schematic design for upgrades to the Footbridge Plaza to consider hard surfaces, landscaping, lighting and sound system installation. Construction is currently unfunded.
Public Works will also proceed with the design and construction of Commercial Street gateway signage elements previously approved for $150,000 of TIF funding in early 2020. Architectural design work for the gateway signage will be lumped together on the same contract with the Footbridge Plaza Schematic Design project. The City expects to have an architect secured and begin engagement with the public on both projects this fall.
Jefferson Avenue Footbridge
Public Works is awaiting final construction document approval from the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) for the Jefferson Avenue Footbridge Renovation project. Upon receiving final approvals, the City will put the project out for contractor bidding.
With a total project budget of $3.2 million, the City is hopeful of attracting qualified contractors to the historic renovation project. Eighty percent of the cost will come from federal Surface Transportation Block Grants (STBG) with a 20% local match divided among various funding sources, including the ¼-cent Capital Improvement and 1/8-cent Transportation sales taxes. The match also relies on funds raised by Commercial Street supporters.
“This project is not only significant culturally and economically to C-Street and the Springfield community as a whole, but it is also very complicated from a construction perspective,” explains Project Manager Nicholas Edelman. “We will use several strategies through this bidding process to help engage the contracting community and find the right company to take this on.”
Public Works expects the Jefferson Avenue Footbridge Renovation project to be out for contractor bidding this fall with construction starting this winter. The project is expected to take approximately one year to complete.
Sign up for C-Street improvement project updates
The City recently launched a contact list to receive updates on City maintenance and improvement projects in the Commercial Street Historic District.