An update on Meyer Circle

After months of renovations, the construction on Meyer Circle is expected to be completed the second week of October.

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An update on Meyer Circle

The fountain in Meyer circle is under construction for a renovation Sep. 26. photo by Delaney Hupke

The fountain in Meyer circle is under construction for a renovation Sep. 26. photo by Delaney Hupke

The fountain in Meyer circle is under construction for a renovation Sep. 26. photo by Delaney Hupke

The fountain in Meyer circle is under construction for a renovation Sep. 26. photo by Delaney Hupke

by Reagan Penn, Writer

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Every day, between 40,000 and 45,000 cars drive around the Seahorse Fountain on Meyer Circle. Up until the fall of 2015, cars would see the fountain running smoothly.

After a flood in the underground vault that holds all of the electrical systems and plumbing in the fall of 2015, the fountain hasn’t been operating.

When the fountain was no longer in operation, individuals from the community took charge. They went to the city to ask for a renovation to the fountain.

“People love our fountains,” President of City of Fountains Foundation Pat O’Neill said.”It didn’t take long for people to notice that [the Seahorse Fountain] was no longer in operation.”

After the flood, it became apparent that renovations were necessary. According to O’Neill, funding had already begun for irregular updates, but after the flood that caused the fountain to be out of operation, more funding began.

A big part of this funding came from private fundraising put on by individuals in the community. O’Neill believes that individuals in the community were involved in fundraising because of their love for the fountain. Retired businessman David Fowler was an individual involved in private fundraising.

“The Seahorse Fountain is an iconic fountain, and I wasn’t going to stand for [it being out of operation] any longer,” Fowler said.

Along with funding to complete the renovations of the fountain, enough money was raised to create an endowment to help with future needs of the Seahorse Fountain.

Construction on the Seahorse Fountain began with an engineering study between October and December of 2016. Renovations began in late spring of 2017.  The final project is expected to be completed by the second week of October.

Throughout the renovations, crews haven’t experienced any major setbacks or surprises according to Fowler. However, Kansas City Power and Light (KCPL) sent crews that were working on the fountain, down to Houston and Florida to help with reconstruction after the recent hurricanes.

According to O’Neill the completion of the fountain will be significant not only to Meyer but also the Kansas City area. With Kansas City being known as the City of Fountains, fountains are recognized all over Kansas City, and are used as a trademark for Kansas City.

“Ward Parkway is one the most iconic boulevards,” O’Neill said. “Between the amount of traffic and one of the most photogenic fountains, the renovations are very significant.”

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