The Extra Degree

At 211 degrees, water is hot.
At 212 degrees, water boils.

& with boiling water, comes steam.
& steam can
power a locomotive.
Raising the temperature of water by one extra degree means the difference between something that is simply very hot and something that generates enough force to power a machine.

It reminds us that seemingly small things can make a tremendous difference! – Sam Parker & Mac Anderson

Jefferson City is blessed to have many creative and innovative people passionate about the development of the city for future generations. This state-of-mind is just the first step in producing a much larger result. The Chamber works hard to encourage this state-of-mind through its action in the areas of business attraction, economic development and small business retention.
The Chamber is constantly spreading its efforts far and wide to bring the Membership ideas to fruition. One recent example of this is the location of the 44,000 square foot Special Olympics Missouri Training for Life Campus. The campus was originally to be located in Columbia, but one Jefferson City resident started to “heat the water” by asking, “Why not Jefferson City?”
“We put out a request for proposal to both Columbia and Jefferson City, and asked them to tell us what they could offer our athletes,” SOMO Board Chairman Phil Cook said. A surprising proposal, as SOMO had already purchased land south of Columbia, and plans had already been drawn up. A call to Chamber President Randy Allen got things moving. Over 40 Jefferson City stakeholders and supporters attended the proposal presentation as compared to a small handful from Columbia which provided the “extra degree” that made the difference. After subsequent meetings with SOMO facilitated by the Chamber, along with a significant donation of land, SOMO decided to build the one-of-a-kind campus in Jefferson City. “Special Olympics is a big deal for us in Jefferson City. We volunteer a lot for that entity, so we’re really excited about keeping the jobs here and getting that new campus here in Jefferson City,” said Randy Allen.
Another great show of the cooperative efforts taken to bring an idea to fruition is the completion of the LINC, a recreational facility to be used by two separate entities. The land for the facility was donated by Lincoln University. Then the Lincoln University Board of Curators and the Parks & Recreation Commission had to approve the concept and provide each entity with a Memorandum of Understanding regarding administration, operations, duties, responsibilities and finances. “The LINC probably serves as a prime example of the partnership established between the University and the JC Parks & Recreation Commission. This relationship provides an excellent opportunity to both our community and the students of LU,” said Greg Gaffke, Lincoln University Board of Curators.

There are some ongoing projects “heating the water” in Jefferson City right now.

The 3-block stretch of Capitol Avenue is currently under renovation including new and repaired sidewalks, curb and gutter work, new street lighting and pedestrian improvements at intersections. The plan also calls for bike lanes, passing lanes and two-lane vehicle traffic.
This project is partially being funded by the half cent sales tax fund for the Missouri State Penitentiary redevelopment. This is the first of many projects brought about by the Missouri State Penitentiary Community Partners. Future plans include the redevelopment of the Missouri State Penitentiary surrounding area with the possibility of retail shops, hotels, offices and the MSP Parkway. Mayor Carrie Tergin spoke of plans to “identify a conference/civic center as a desired use with the area to be redeveloped.” Mark Schreiber, a past warden for Missouri State Penitentiary added, “We’ve got a unique opportunity here to blend the historical old with the potential new. If we get the right developer and put the right kind of project there, whatever that might be, then we have a really grand opportunity to bring jobs and regeneration of the whole east side.”
Mayor Carrie Tergin weighed in, “We have what no other city has. Jefferson City is the only city in the country that has a capitol, a river and a historic prison, which poses a very unique opportunity for growth, evident in the Capitol Avenue renovations, and adding fun new events like Porchfest.

“Jefferson City is the only city in the country that has a capitol, a river and a historic prison”

© Lloyd Grotjan / Full Spectrum Photo

It’s easy to be proud
of our community leaders.

Chamber members and residents are doing the seemingly “little” things to “raise the temperature” by that one degree.

Because of that, great things are happening

in our community which will impact our future generations.


belongs to those
who see

they become

-John Scully

© Alec Pettus