Throughout this 25th anniversary year, we will travel down memory lane to remind ourselves of the many people, events and accomplishments that have made Southtown such a great place to live and work. This is the second edition and covers the years from 1988 through 1993:
With the help of CORO student interns, the Troost Avenue Revitalization project took off in 1988! These summer college students conducted a clean-up project along Troost from 55th to 63rd and initiated the Troost Action Group. At the same time, Phase II of the 63rd St. Improvement Project was funded and completed in 1989 bringing new sidewalks/curbing, and sewers to 63rd St. from Prospect to Woodland. The Boone Cemetery project was initiated. Southtown received the Economic Development Cornerstone Award and membership grew to 134. In 1989, the Façade Rebate Program began and over the next 5 years, 47 storefronts on Troost were renovated. Southtown offices moved once more to 1145 E. 63rd St.; the organization boundaries extended to 75th St.; the first Southtown Quarterly newsletter was published; and the Council won the Missouri Community Betterment Award. Jim Rice captured all of these moments in the slideshow, “Southtown- Where KC Grew Up.”
1990 was a year of firsts! The first Southtown Directory was produced, monthly coffees were initiated, and Phase I of the Troost Streetscape Plan was completed and Phase II was approved. By 1991, Phase III of the 63rd St. Project was completed, Phases I of the Bruce Watkins Drive was completed and Phase II started. The Southtown 2000 Plan was unveiled, setting the path for future redevelopment in the community. A security patrol service began on Troost and a Business Security Handbook was developed.
In 1992, Phase II of the Troost Streetscape was completed, the first After Hours Business Exchange was held along with an “Affordable Homes Tour in Southtown.” Not having enough to do, the Southtown Council contracted to provide the management of the Waldo Area Business Association in 1993. A Business Breakfast was held at the Zoo’s new Australian exhibit; the first gateway park was developed at 63rd and Prospect; and Jim Rice produced “The Southtown Story.”