ST. LOUIS (KSDK) - The massive makeover to the Gateway Arch grounds is underway. And while one speed bump is causing some delays, project leaders say those delays are very minor. And they say as planned, the grounds will be transformed by the Arch's 50th birthday next year.
Plans include building a park over I-70 to connect the Old Courthouse to the Arch. Crews will also renovate the courthouse, and the museum, where there will be a new visitor entrance. Kiener Plaza and the north side of the Arch grounds will also get a facelift. Back in November, project leaders announced the new visitor entrance would not be open by the originally scheduled completion date in October 2015. And Wednesday, a new schedule showed a couple more delays, which include renovations to the existing restrooms and taking down the current ticketing booths. But, since the project includes new restrooms and new ticketing booths, project leaders say the setbacks won't affect the visitor experience.
"It's natural with a project this complex and of this size that there will be delays. But actually right now there's not much that is delayed. We had hoped to have approval from a National Parks review board in November and that was delayed until March," said CityArchRiver 2015 Foundation Executive Director Maggie Hales.
Project leaders also say their schedule remains fluid because there are so many different agencies involved. They also say they're taking their the time to do it right. But they say no matter what there will be a celebration on the grounds in October 2015, in honor of the arch, and the massive renovation project.