By Daniel Winningham
Perryville city administrator Brent Buerck provided updates on a series of city and county projects during his appearance at a June 8 Chamber Coffee and Connections event.
Work continues to progress on Ranken Technical College, which will be located on Highway 51, across from T.G.
“That is an incredible deal we got from the state of Missouri, Ranken partnered with us,” Buerck said.
Planning continues as well for the Justice Center, which will be located on the old St. Boniface property end of St. Joseph Street.
“This joint justice center is really first in Missouri to my knowledge, maybe the Midwest, where a community had the vision to combine police and sheriff and eliminate the duplication of services. Right now we both have jail facilities, we both have dispatch facilities. For years we were both operating courtrooms and paying judges. Over the last decade we’ve consolidated a lock of services.
Over the past 10 years or so, there has been an effort to consolidate services, Buerck noted.
This began with an approved citizen vote to eliminate the city collector position and have the county collector handle this.
“That kind of started us on a chain reaction of several projects,” he said.
If adding the new Chester Bridge (estimated most recently to cost more than $200 million) Buerck said the combined projects total $276 million invested in the city and county.
“These are blessings that communities our size don’t often see,” he said. “Most of these are once in a generation in a community, once in the lifetime of the city administrator. These are really transformational projects.”
“One of the main goals I had, the police department had, was how close can we locate this justice center to our kids, which are our future,” Buerck said. “It’s a scary world we live in but it’s the reality we have to face. St. Joe, between St. Vincent’s and Immanuel, and being a stone’s throw away from the public school district, we think will serve the community very well going forward.
Other minor improvements include a Greenway trial extension, to steer individuals from the splash pad at Miget Park on French Lane to the soccer complex.
In addition, the Perryville Board of Aldermen have committed to building a skate park. We tore one down several years ago… We going to do it better, and in a better place.”