KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The death of a 4-year-old girl in a traffic crash Monday is prompting city leaders to look at installing a guardrail along Northeast Parvin Road.
Neighbors at the Colonial Square Apartments have repeatedly asked the city to upgrade the road.
City leaders say they've learned about dozens of crashes along this section of Parvin Road in recent years, and the city does have a plan for improving the entire corridor from Interstate 435 to the I-29-35 split.
Police say a 53-year-old driver sideswiped a van Monday while trying to pass it and then lost control. The SUV plunged off of the curvy country roadway, down a hill, where it struck several trees and rolled over in the Colonial Square yard.
The crash killed a 4-year-old girl riding inside the van. Police have not said if the child was wearing a seat belt.
In recent years, the city has rejected requests for additional turn lanes on Parvin, after engineers determined the road does have safe sight distances.
But now that neighbors believe a guardrail may helped prevent this latest loss of life, at least one councilman says that's something the city can get done.
"Certainly something like a guardrail is much more cheaper to do," said 1st District Councilman Scott Wagner. "It's something that can be done more quickly. We are having that conversation now with our public works department to see what options we have to put something up in the more immediate future. So we are going to pursue that and see if we can, for those who live in the immediate area down in that hill, give them some peace of mind. We are happy to try to do that."
The first phase of upgrades for Parvin Road are scheduled to begin in 2021, when the intersection of Parvin and Prather roads will be turned into a roundabout to improve traffic control.
The entire Parvin Road reconstruction project is estimated to cost $12-million, which includes adding curbs and sidewalks. Wagner says the city is still trying to figure out how to pay for it.
Part of the problem is that the Buck O'Neil bridge project has sucked up all available sources of funding, according to Wagner, delaying projects like this one.