THE STATE JOURNAL-REGISTER, Posted Jan 21, 2010 @ 12:07 AM
THERE MAY BE no neighborhood group in Springfield more passionate about improving its surroundings than the MacArthur Boulevard Business Association.
The decline of MacArthur Boulevard is a civic calamity for Springfield and one of the most unfortunate results of an utter lack of urban planning and the unchecked march westward of the city’s developers and businesses.
IT’S TRUE that government and private property owners have allowed the area’s infrastructure to decline. Just walking down the street’s crumbling sidewalks can be an adventure. But it’s truly puzzling why few seem to want to reinvest there considering the neighborhoods that surround the road.
On the east side of MacArthur Boulevard is a greatly desired, middle-class, family neighborhood. Housing is affordable and there is a measurable sense of community. On MacArthur’s west side is Leland Grove, an affluent suburb and one of Springfield’s most desirable addresses. There are two schools in the area — Blessed Sacrament and Butler Elementary — within walking distance or a short drive. Oh, and 21,000 cars (and potential customers) drive on MacArthur every day.
This page enthusiastically supports a $95,000 study being paid for with federal housing money to help figure out how to redevelop the area.