Monday marked the beginning of the third phase of Independence's corridor code enforcement program – this time along Truman Road. The code enforcement program, begun two years ago, is designed to use proactive inspections to address various city code violations in an attempt to improve the city's overall appearance.

First District City Council Member John Perkins said the corridor code enforcement program has been “incredibly successful” in its first two years – more than 500 properties inspected, 294 cases initiated but just 55 tickets issued and 17 abatements conducted.

“We were blown away by the positive response from citizens and businesses (since the program started),” Perkins said in a release. “The voluntary compliance of our property owners demonstrates the support and engagement with this initiative as we work to improve the appearance of our key corridors.”

With the code enforcement program, community development staff members are checking for zoning and property maintenance violations on the exterior of each property, as well as appropriate licenses. If necessary, a building inspector can address a potentially dangerous structural issue. Members of the police and fire departments also collaborate as needed.

The Truman Road initiative is to last a few weeks, with follow-ups in the spring. The city says it is divided into five sections in the city's western half:

• Brookside Avenue to Cedar Avenue.

• Cedar to Northern Boulevard.

• Northern to Sterling Avenue.

• Sterling to Forest Boulevard.

• Forest to River Boulevard.

The first phase, started in December 2016, went along U.S. 24 from the western border of the city to just east of Noland Road. A year later, the city focused on U.S. 40 from the western border to Noland Road and Noland north from U.S. 40 to Interstate 70.

Later phases are to include 23rd Street, Missouri 291 and the eastern portion of U.S. 24.