October 6, 2017


EDITORS' NOTE: The City of Independence has spent more than a decade forming committees and making elaborate plans to improve Fairmount and turn it into a trendy business district, yet very little has been done during this time to address the obvious problems that have existed for years. Flooding, lack of proper sidewalks, public safety, and economic problems are ignored as plans are being drawn up for such projects as a new park, a possible roundabout on 24 Highway, walking trails and so forth.
   The City Council is now forming a new committee that is said to be making the FINAL decision on how to improve this area. Contact the City Council using the contact information found at this link and let them know what we really need!
By Aimee Worley

   Who is to blame for the flooding of 24 Highway and Northern Boulevard?

   For 5 years now the businesses on this small stretch of 24 Highway have had to deal with major flooding anytime heavy storms or flash flooding is forecasted. Thelma Jordan, owner of Fairmount Liquors, Mark Cosgrove of the Best Buy Car Company, along with the car wash have to move into high gear and move their products to higher ground. 

   Fairmount Liquors always gets the worst with thousands of products which must be removed or raised up to 4 and a half feet as flood water along with mud fill her store. She has had to suffer multiple losses. Enough is enough.

   No one wants to take responsibility, not the City of Independence, the City of Sugar Creek, nor even MODot (Missouri Department of Transportation) which is responsible for 24 Highway and its storm drains. 

   This reporter, who grew up in this area and has never lived further than 3 miles from here knows that someone is to blame. I have done some investigating because I know there is a major problem and I have come up with the only conclusion.

   Over the past couple of years everyone has pointed to the Best Buy Car Company, but as I was investigating I discovered the water that flows under the highway is failing, but not on the Sugar Creek side. 180 feet behind Best Buy is a ravine that is collapsing. The City of Sugar Creek purchased old smoke stacks from Standard Oil to use around the city as culverts.
Old Standard Oil Smokestacks were converted
into drainage culverts in 1961.

   I counted over five in different places around town. Well those old smoke stacks are failing. As I investigated on Saturday, August 26, I found heavy drainage pouring out of one of the old stacks, along with trees falling, rocks being washed away with the amount of water moving out and into Sugar Creek on its way to empty into the Missouri River. 

   The ravine and stagnant, infested water on the south side of 24 Highway keeps getting bigger and bigger. It’s also creating another pond on the west side of Northern Blvd. It flooded the Full Gospel Church, which suffered extensive losses.

   The City of Independence stated in 2015 that they along with MODot think that the culvert is working properly and it isn’t their problem. I believe they are wrong and it’s time for them to spend their money on taking care of the businesses that have been affected by this problem. We don’t need a park or a roundabout to improve the area. Fix what is broken first. Enough is enough.

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