The Square renovations to improve business, traffic

Storefronts on The Square in downtown Kirksville show signs of wear and old age. The Tax Increment Financing Commission has begun the Downtown Revitalization Pilot Project, which aims to restore and renovate certain parts of the downtown area, such as sidewalks and storefronts. Photo credit: MacKenna Palazza

Kirksville completed street improvements to the downtown area on schedule July 27 as part of a multi-department city effort to improve the visual appeal of The Square.

The Tax Increment Finance commission financed the project, which was part of the Downtown Revitalization Pilot Program. Improvements include street resurfacing, new street markings, improved sidewalks and traffic changes. Engineering technician Linda Jepson, who oversaw the project, says there will also be 18 new street lights installed in the near future.

Jepson says one of the major changes drivers should be conscious of is the change to traffic directions. She says several of the streets surrounding the square have been redesigned from one-way traffic to two-way traffic. Jepson says drivers should be mindful of these changes and pay attention to how traffic is structured.

“Part of the reason we did that is because we were seeing a lot of vehicles going the wrong way on a one way,” Jepson says.

Jepson says all streets that were one-way but a block away from The Square became two-way, with the exception of Elson Street. She says it might take people a while to adjust to the changes, but the design allows more opportunities for people to get in and out of The Square.