Shawnee has started construction on significant roadway improvements along a section of Monticello Road and plans to invoke eminent domain in order to access private property to complete the project.
Monticello Road from Shawnee Mission Parkway to 71st Terrace has the look and feel of a country road with no curbs or sidewalks.
Phase 1 improvements, as laid out by the city, include:
- widening the street and repaving the asphalt
- adding bike lanes, curbs and accessible ramps
- adding a sidewalk on one side and a multipurpose trail on the other
- relocating utilities and making storm sewer improvements
- improving traffic signage, street lights and pavement markings
The Shawnee City Council unanimously approved a resolution declaring it necessary to obtain temporary easements on private property to complete the project. The city council also unanimously approved passage of an ordinance authorizing acquisition of that private property.
Temporary easements within the project area have expired since 2008, when the project was first scheduled to occur, according to city documents.
City staff noted that some property owners wanted compensation for renewing their easements. The city is beginning the process to acquire some tracts of private property along Monticello using eminent domain.
Right-of-way costs amount to $100,000 and are included in the project’s overall $5.9 million cost. The federal Surface Transportation Program will also contribute about $3 million to the project.
Phase 2 improvements cost about $9.8 million and are expected to begin sometime next year.
Councilmember Lindsey Constance said she wanted to ensure the city maintains a point of contact for neighbors affected by the project. Paul Lindstrom, senior project engineer with the city, said city staff maintains will be in communication with the property owners.