Archive for Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Our view: County moves ahead on important issues

January 26, 2005

There's a new Leavenworth County Commission at work, and all indications are that this one won't sit and watch the world go by.

On Tuesday, commissioners headed over to Topeka, to nail down the Kansas Turnpike Authority on an interchange on the turnpike for Leavenworth County. And next week, commissioners likely will sit down with Kansas Department of Transportation officials to get a commitment from them about proceeding on necessary road improvements around the interchange.

As anyone who's been involved with economic development knows: Roads are crucial to the future of an area. And good roads can mean the difference between an area that will grow and prosper and one that will die on the vine.

Just consider what has occurred in the Tonganoxie and Basehor areas during the past few years -- since U.S. Highway 24-40 was transformed from a lazy two-lane road into a four-lane highway. The highway has proven to be a boon for southern Leavenworth County.

And it's expected that an interchange on the busy Kansas Turnpike will mean not only more convenience for Leavenworth County residents, but also increased commercial and residential development. And that doesn't take into account what it could mean for the city of Tonganoxie, which is a short three miles north of the turnpike.

The county commission -- which includes two new members, former state official Clyde Graeber and Tonganoxie Dean Oroke, himself a former commissioner -- has hit the ground running in 2005.

And it will be exciting to see where the two newcomers, along with holdover Commissioner Don Navinsky lead the county.

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