Downtown Alive’s gateway arch project is still underway, with timing the only obstacle in the way of its completion, according to Downtown Alive President Cindy Miller.
Of the estimated total cost of $35,000, about $27,000 has been raised to date, and the gateway’s pillars are already installed. The steel frame and the arch that will stretch across Main Street near Missouri 7 are all that are left, and the only need now is to pin down a date for the volunteers to finish the construction.
“We’re hoping by late August or September,” said Miller. The construction is done by volunteers, so the project is dependent on their schedules, but when it’s completed, Miller said the gateway will serve as an example of how far downtown Blue Springs has come in the past 10 years.
“Downtown was kind of a thing of the past,” said Miller, with a lot of attention being placed on streets like Adams Dairy Parkway. Now however, the downtown area is seeing new businesses take root, with restaurants and breweries finding their way into a downtown home.
“There’s so many businesses that have moved downtown when there was nothing 10 years ago,” Miller said. “Now everyone knows where downtown is.”
The gateway project is meant to reinforce that, with even drivers passing by who don’t know anything about the downtown area knowing there’s something to do when seeing the arch span across the street.
With live music and nightlife becoming more available downtown, Miller said she would like to see it become an entertainment district of sorts.
“Come down and eat and shop, bring your family,” she said. “There’s a lot of growth going on and a lot of entrepreneurs, and that’s what the downtown district feeds off of.”
Last year saw new businesses such as massage parlor Sacred Space Wellness and technology company Omnitech take root downtown, and more recently East Forty Brewing set up shop, implementing solar power on their roof to encourage green energy use.
Miller said she wanted to thank residents who have volunteered their time, labor and funds to make the arch possible.
“We couldn’t afford this gateway without those people,” she said.