By Justin Schmidt, Multimedia Journalist - bio | email
GRANDVIEW, MO (KCTV) -
When U.S. Highway 71 switched to Interstate 49 in December, Grandview, MO, residents noticed something was missing.
Large green traffic signs that hung across the former highway used to include Grandview on their list of where the roadway goes.
"It took us all by surprise that the name Grandview, that had been on the signs all those years. If you were headed south, you were headed to Grandview. Now you're headed to Joplin," Grandview Mayor Steve Dennis said.
Dennis is working with the Missouri Department of Transportation to bring Grandview back to the 10 signs on connecting highways.
"I love the advertising. I love the name Grandview anywhere I can get it. We're in the mode of growth right now. We're fortunate to have a number of projects in the works," Dennis said. "Having that image of a revitalized Grandview out there is what we're all about right now. Having that name on the signs helps people find their way to the great city of Grandview."
The MoDOT project manager for the I-49 project said interstate signage usually lists what they call control cities, in this case Kansas City and Joplin. MoDOT is working to get Grandview back on the signs, but that means larger signs. Right now they're making sure the trusses can support the larger signs.
"It was an oversight, not something malicious by MoDOT, in fact MoDOT has been a tremendous partner with us in the past few years," Dennis said.
Many who live in the city of roughly 27,000 said they've established a great place for people to come and visit and they want to let visitors know about it.
"We have things here, a foundation. If people don't know about that, then they're not going to come," Tabitha Foster said.
Foster waits tables at TJ's Cafe just a few hundred feet from I-49. She said it's odd not seeing the familiar sign.
"Some people are good with highways, some aren't. People who are new, or even been around a while, they're going to look for Grandview, and might think, ‘Am I in the right spot?'" she said.
MoDOT hopes to have the new signs up early this summer. They don't know exactly how much the project will cost.
Copyright 2013 KCTV (Meredith Corp.) All rights reserved.
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