New parking lot to replace vacant buildings; what were they before vacancy?

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SPRINGFIELD, Mo- The city is planning to tear down three vacant buildings on N. Boonville to make way for a new parking lot.

Collin Quigley, Deputy City Manager, says the city acquired the buildings from Greene County a few years ago.

“They’re vacant and they’re in disrepair, dangerous buildings actually. Our plan is to have these buildings demolished and to put in a new parking lot,” says Quigley.

He says there will be 100 public parking spots with some handicap accessible parking.

According to a press release from the City of Springfield, the project will take approximately 45 days, according to Jennifer Swan, a registered architect with the Department of Public Works’ Facility Design and Construction division. Swan anticipates the demolition will be completed in May.

“The City Utilities bus stop shelter located just north of the buildings will be removed temporarily during the project to ensure public safety and will be reinstalled once the parking project is complete,” the press release states.

The city is hoping to open the parking lot in July.

The new parking lot will take over where 827, 833 and 843-845 N. Boonville have lived for many years.

According to Richard Crabtree, area realtor and admin of the Springfield, Missouri History, Landmarks & Vintage photography Facebook page, these buildings have served many purposes from a dry cleaning company to a bakery.

Richard was unable to do an interview Tuesday afternoon but was able to dig up some pictures of what the buildings looked like in the early to mid-1900s.

Below are some of those pictures he shared with Ozarks First.

This is the 1910 map of the area, so 837-45 were there as 857-873 (pre-1948)
Smith and Messinger Cleaners and Dryers 1908-9, 869 (839/41) N. Boonville
City Hall Market 871 (843) N. Boonville
Diamond Bakery 873 (845) N. Boonville
August 1916 – you can see the 857-73 (837-845) building on the right, on the left you see Historic City Hall
A portion of 833 and all of 837-45 in the 1940s

Another project the city plans to renovate is the exterior envelope of former Springfield Mill and Lumber building just northwest of the new parking lot.

“This project is estimated to be completed in July at the cost of $711,426.50. Reasbeck Construction will perform the work, which will provide additional office space for the Springfield Police Department,” says the release.

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