February 07, 2014

News Release

For Immediate Release

City exceeds first Route 66 fund-raising goal

Thanks to a donation of $1,000 from Councilman Craig Fishel, the City of Springfield not only reached its first fund-raising goal for the Birthplace of Route 66 Roadside Park, it exceeded it by $126.

The $15,126 raised through local crowd-funding company CrowdIt.com (www.crowdit.com/route66sgf) will cover construction costs for a re-creation of the iconic Red’s Giant Hamburg sign, a major landmark along the Historic Route 66 Highway.

Ground will be broken in April for the initial development of the Birthplace of Route 66 Roadside Park. The Red’s sign will likely be installed this summer with a ribbon cutting for the park as part of the planned activities around the annual Birthplace of Route 66 Festival in August.

The Birthplace of Route 66 Roadside Park fund-raising initiative kicked off Oct. 2, 2013 with an event at Mother’s Brewing Company, which is located along the historic route.

Several donations helped the fund grow quickly. Hy-Vee donated $1,000 during a week of fund raising for the project last June. Route 66 enthusiasts donated $500 at the Birthplace of Route 66 Festival last August.

At the Mother's event, business owners and classic car enthusiasts Guy and Dorothy Mace donated $2,500. West Central Neighborhood Association donated $3,000 at the event and later donated another $1,125.

The estimated cost of the Birthplace of Route 66 Roadside Park is about $1 million, according to Director of Planning Ralph Rognstad. While the City will provide funding to implement certain infrastructure improvements along the College Street stretch of Historic Route 66 between Grant Avenue and Kansas Expressway, it must leverage its investment in the project with private donations and other sources of funding.

A larger plan to revitalize Historic Route 66 through other parts of Springfield could roll out in phases, as the City gauges interest and potential funding.

"We hope to make Springfield THE stop along the famed, historic byway," says City Manager Greg Burris.

For more information, contact: Cora Scott, Director of Public Information & Civic Engagement, 417-864-1009 (office) | 417-380-3352 (cell), cscott@springfieldmo.gov

city of springfield

Department of Planning and Development

840 Boonville Avenue • P.O. Box 8368 • Springfield, MO 65801
417-864-1031 • Fax: 417-864-1030 • springfieldmo.gov