On Monday, Oct. 3, during the regularly scheduled council meeting, the City Council will receive information on a unique opportunity to purchase the property at 32 South Providence Road.
The property along the east side of Providence Road between Broadway and Cherry most recently was home to McAdams Limited and the property is contiguous to Flat Branch Park.
The property is historically sensitive to Columbia's founding.
- In November 1818 the Smithton Land Company purchased a tract of land roughly near the current intersection of Garth Ave and Broadway with the intent to establish the town of Smithton which was to be the county seat of a newly formed county.
- In November 1820, the legislature of the Territory of Missouri approved a law creating the county of Boone. The location of Smithton was rejected as the county seat due to the lack of an adequate water supply.
- In April 1821, the trustee's of the Smithton Company took the basic Smithton town plan and moved it about one-half mile east, along the Flat Branch Creek, and renamed the administrative seat of Boone County to Columbia.
"This unique and historic property, the birthplace of Columbia, should be preserved for use by all Columbia residents," said Mayor Brian Treece. "With Columbia's bicentennial just a few years away, this is a generational opportunity for the citizens of Columbia to honor our founders."
"This property is a strategic acquisition essential to creating a remarkable gateway to Columbia's downtown," said Treece.
The area in which the property is located has been included in many plans as an area for green space, most recently in 2010 by H3 Studio's as part of the Urban Downtown Charrette.
"The acquisition of this property will help the city "connect the dots", to expand Columbia's only downtown park, Flat Branch Park, which is the trailhead of the MKT Trail," said Mike Matthes. "This would also position the community to acquire additional properties in this historic area as they become available as outlined in the H3 Charrette Report."
In the next 30 days, staff will work on providing council and residents with potential ideas on how the property could be developed. These preliminary ideas would be further vetted and developed during future public input sessions.
Council bill 273-16 is being introduced on Monday, October 3 and will be followed by a public hearing and possible vote to authorize a purchase of the property on Monday, October 17. The bill and supporting documentation can be found on the city website at CoMo.gov, click on "Meetings" and follow the links to the October 3 City Council Meeting agenda.