Archive for Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Interchange opponents take case to Lawrence

March 28, 2007

A group of Leavenworth County residents opposed to an interchange to the Kansas Turnpike at County Road 1 has gone outside the county to discuss an alternative.

Lawrence attorney Price Banks, who is working with opponents to the KTA interchange at County Road 1, was scheduled to appear Tuesday night before the Lawrence City Commission to ask it to consider an eastern bypass around Lawrence as an alternative to the Leavenworth County proposal.

Lawrence Mayor Mike Amyx said earlier Tuesday his city had no plans for creating an eastern bypass but would listen to the group and consider the possibility.

Monday night, Tonganoxie City Administrator Mike Yanez updated the Tonganoxie City Council on the interchange proposal. He had received a copy of the Feb. 12 letter from Banks to David Corliss, Lawrence's city manager. The letter asks for the opportunity for Banks' clients to address the Lawrence City Commission about the issue.

Kathy Bard, Tonganoxie assistant city administrator, said she didn't believe Lawrence would want to take on another city project like the bypass but doesn't discount the possibility if Lawrence would rather see the interchange there.

Yanez told the council the city of Tonganoxie had not received any word about the lawsuit it filed in Leavenworth County District Court last November. The lawsuit challenges the validity of a petition that was seeking a vote on whether the city could help fund the County Road 1 interchange.

Yanez also said Leavenworth County had not responded to Tonganoxie's proposed $1 million contribution for the project.

He said the criteria for the stipulations for the contributions, including how the city was going to pay the money and an agreement that the city would have a voice in how the interchange would develop, had not been settled.

"It appears that Leavenworth County is taking the bull by the horns on its own as far as development standards, and as I said there has been no communication on acceptance or rejection of the city's $1 million offer," Yanez said. "The thing I fear is that the city may be on the outside looking in regarding what is going to happen along County Road 1."

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