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Joplin City Council's response to COVID-19 and new parking space for Memorial Hall

JOPLIN, MO – Joplin City Council discussed the city’s COVID-19 response this evening.

Joplin has moved through all three phases of its COVID-19 Recovery and Response plan.

Due to the availability of vaccines, city manager Nick Edwards recommended ending the plan in favor of focusing on preventing future health emergencies.

However, council member Charles Copple objected, citing the increase in local COVID-19 cases.

“It’s more than tripled in the last week to week and a half,” Copple said. “I think this is a bad time to move out of the recovery plan and send the message that things are going well.”

A motion on ending Joplin’s response plan was not made, so the city will stay in the final stage.

The City Council also approved an ordinance on first reading that will allow them to acquire parking space from the Joplin School District.

The school district currently owns parking space at West 9th and South Wall that it’s willing to give to the city.

The new parking will provide additional space for Memorial Hall.

Renovations for Memorial Hall will be on the ballot in 2022, which officials say could lead to a need for the additional parking.

Edwards said he is “thankful for the Joplin School District, their willingness to partner and help solve a parking issue for us at Memorial Hall. I think it’s an incredible improvement for us. We’re soon to have two very great amenities and very great facilities and still have adequate parking.”

The city will be adding a total of 103 parking spaces, with the potential for additional overflow parking.

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