October 27, 2010

News Release

For Immediate Release

Commons at Jordan Valley Dedication October 28

A dedication ceremony for the Commons at Jordan Valley and the Springfield Sister Cities Plaza will be held at 4:30 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 28, 2010. The Commons is located at the northwest corner of Trafficway and National Avenue, and is a public gathering space that serves as the easternmost gateway into Jordan Valley.

The Phase I development of the southern third of the site is a community multi-purpose facility. It includes an artistic gateway feature at National Avenue and Trafficway, plaza walkways, modest landscaping and a parking lot on the southwest corner of the property. Focal elements include a series of decorative stainless steel light poles and surrounding limestone rock, and a Sister Cities Plaza that recognizes Springfield’s relationship with Isesaki, Japan and Tlaquepaque, Mexico. The plaza includes flagpoles flying the flags of the three cities, an etched stone world map showing the locations of the sister cities and a series of handmade tiles by artists from Tlaquepaque. Trees will be planted around the plaza later this fall.

The full 9.5-acre site is a former limestone quarry that dates back to the 19th century. Following use as a quarry, the site was the end point for debris and fill for many years, including for trees killed by Dutch Elm disease in the 1960s. A flare system has been installed to help mitigate methane gas created as a result of those dumped trees. The amount of methane is relatively small, but is still significant enough to warrant the flame. In more recent years, the site was reclaimed for public use under the City’s Brownfields Program, and was further filled with clean fill from area construction projects. The northern portion of the site will become green space to allow for continued settling of the soil and future development as funding allows.

The dedication ceremony will feature special performances by Tlaquepaque musician Paco Padilla and Springfield’s Japanese Zen-Daiko dance group. Padilla is also a visual artist, and contributed some of the colorful Mexican tiles seen in the plaza.

The project was funded through a Department of Housing and Urban Development Economic Development Initiative grant, secured by Congressman Roy Blunt. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Missouri Department of Natural Resources provided funding and technical oversight for the design and implementation the methane mitigation system.

The Commons project is consistent with the adopted community-based Jordan Valley and Jordan Valley Park Concept Plan and Design Guidelines, and builds on the conceptual design developed in 2008. It follows an extensive nine-month community engagement process aimed at focusing the vision for this and other future elements of Jordan Valley.

This and other projects in Jordan Valley are developed with guidance and input from the Jordan Valley Advisory Committee citizens group. More information about this project, Jordan Valley, and the concept master plan can be found online at www.springfieldmo.gov/jvp.

Parking for the event will be available in the new Commons lot and the adjacent Springfield Cardinals lot.

For more information, contact: Olivia Hough, City of Springfield Planning and Development Department, (417) 864-1092.

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