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Evangel University, MoDOT break ground on projects

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Two new construction projects were recently unveiled in Springfield at the Evangel University campus and at the intersection of Kansas Expressway and Norton Road.

Evangel University is constructing a 28,000-square-foot student activities center located north of the current gym, according to a news release from Evangel.

The new facility, the J. Robert Ashcroft Activities Center, is a $2.5 million project that will include two basketball and racquetball courts, an indoor running track, an aerobics room and locker rooms. A mezzanine area equipped with exercise equipment will also be included in the building, the release stated.

The ground breaking for the development of the activities center was held the morning of July 1. Attending the event were current and past administrators, faculty, staff and student government leaders, Evangel stated.

Sapp Design Associates is the architectural firm on the project, and the construction company is Gray General Contractors Inc.

Improvements to the intersection of Kansas Expressway and Norton Road is the second of seven planned highway improvement ventures sponsored jointly by the city and state, according to a press release from the Missouri Department of Transportation.

Intersection improvements include an extended right-turn lane for northbound Route 13 traffic onto Norton Road, and dual left-turn lanes at Route 13 and Norton Road. The project is being funded by the voter-approved eighth-cent transportation tax, the MoDOT release said.

The 1995-approved quarter-cent sales tax is funding the changes to Norton Road east of Route 13 to Fort Street. Improvements to Norton Road include improved street lighting, sidewalks, relocating and widening of Norton Road, a pedestrian underpass, stormwater management improvements and utility relocations.

The changes made to Norton Road are part of an ongoing project to improve Norton Road from Route 13 to National Avenue, according to the release.

Ground breaking ceremonies were held the afternoon of July 8 at the northeast corner of the intersection.

The project's contractor is Hartman Construction Company, and Mathews and Associates is the consulting engineer.

Traffic will have access to Norton Road throughout the construction.

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