Columbia City Council postpones vote on brick-paved street repairs

Nov 19, 2013

brick street
Credit orinjuice / flickr

The Columbia City Council tabled a vote that would have created the first-ever written plan to repair and maintain Columbia’s brick-paved streets at its meeting Monday. 

The Historic Preservation Commission drafted the plan, which protects the brick-paved streets and gives guidelines for their upkeep.

The Human Rights Commission requested approval of the plan be postponed until more public comment on the issue could be heard. Councilmember Karl Skala agrees.

“I suggest that after this discussion that we move to have some sort of informational meeting with the public, as well as to bring the council up to snuff on this," Skala said. 

Councilmember Barbara Hoppe says she’s concerned that the current plan doesn’t address East Campus. 

“I would like to hear from the East Campus Neighborhood Association," Hoppe said. "East Campus is a national and state historic district."

Not all Columbia citizens are in favor of preserving Columbia’s brick-paved streets. The Disabilities Commission says brick streets can present a real challenge for handicapped or elderly citizens.

In an October 2013 letter to the city council, the Disabilities Commission said that brick-paved streets present serious dangers to citizens in wheelchairs or walkers – one commission member even suffered a compression fracture due to traveling over a brick-paved street. The letter said wheelchair turnovers are another likely hazard.