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Businesses adjust amid plans for progress

The Examiner

From The Examiner during the week of Jan. 4-9, 1971:

• ‘29-OF-35 FIRMS DISPLACED BY UR WORK ON SQUARE RELOCATE HERE” – Out of 35 businesses displaced at this time in the Independence Square area by Urban Renewal, 29 of the businesses have relocated in the city, most in the Square area. The figures were made available at the request of The Examiner by the staff of the Land Clearance for Redevelopment Authority. Relocation payments, direct federal subsidies to the displaced businesses, totaled $154,684.12 as of Nov. 30. The relocations have taken place from January 1969 to the present.

An ad from a century ago this winter in The Independence Examiner.

Among the 29 are Tremarco Service Station, formerly Truman Road and Osage, now 23rd and Main; Southard Cab, formerly Osage and Truman, now Main and Walnut; Herald Book Store, formerly in Battery Building, now is Gaslight Square Center on South Noland Road; and Jack’s Chili, was at 216 W. Lexington, moved to former Gibbons Cafe, 107 W. Lexington (building burned in fire early this year). Of the seven still to be relocated, three have definite sites, including Diamond Bowl, now at 209 S. Spring, to be relocated at 216 N. Osage.

• “CITY TO PURCHASE NW PARKWAY LAND” – The city should be able to buy Northwest Parkway land from Urban Renewal within two to three weeks, and work should begin on the park in the spring. This important step in the long and controversial 27-acre project was made Wednesday at a meeting of the Urban Renewal Board. John F. Hayner, newly elected Urban Renewal board chairman, expressed relief that the “long, tedious and sometimes tortuous” project had finally reached this stage. 

Current plans for the area call for a scenic park, with numerous walkways and benches. In addition, a play area with equipment is proposed. 

The total $2.4 million project, bounded by River on the west, Spring on the east, U.S. 24 on the north, and Farmer and Waldo on the south, involved the buying of 190 pieces of property and the destruction of 144 houses. Differences in how the land should be developed held up the project for some time. The project was first approved on Dec. 29, 1964.

Note: Although it chronicled this major moment in the life of the community – McCoy Park stands today and is well used – The Examiner badly missed the mark by neglecting to point out that this move destroyed the Neck, a predominantly Black part of the city, displacing many families and permanently disrupting a significant part of the community.

From The Independence Examiner during the week of Jan. 3-8, 1921:

• “NO BANK REPORT YET” (Friday, Jan. 7) – At 2 o’clock this afternoon the deputy state bank examiner and the board of directors, who are going over the books and accounts of the Commercial State Bank, at Mount Washington, which was closed Tuesday night by the board of directors on account of the unexplained absence of Vice-President and Acting Cashier Walter M. Halpin, were not ready to make a report of the amount of the bank’s shortage. It is expected that it will amount to several thousand dollars.

• “GET A VICTORY MEDAL.” – Every man who served in the United States army during the World War is entitled to a Victory Medal. This medal is said to be the most beautiful campaign badge ever put out by the United States. It is made of heavy bronze, one and one-quarter inches in diameter, and is suspended from a silk ribbon of the combined colors of the allies. To obtain one of these medals, it is only necessary for eligible men in this vicinity to sign an application blank and send it to the United States army recruiting station, 203 East Twelfth street, Kansas City.

• “IS A DANGEROUS HABIT.” – During the noon hour today, boys from the Junior High School, corner of Maple Avenue and Pleasant Street, kept running into the street and hanging on the backs of passing trucks. No one was hurt but someone might have been. In one case three boys ran out to catch a truck which was being driven east at a good rate. Two of the boys caught the truck but the third failed and the driver of a Ford coupe, which was following close after the truck, had to throw his brakes down hard to prevent hitting the youngster. If an accident had happened it would not have been the fault of the drivers of the trucks and cars.

– Compiled by Jeff Fox