Stock Yards Must Be Moved, 1921

From the March 10, 1921 Skidmore News (Skidmore, Missouri), page 1:

Local Stock Yards Must Be Moved.
Public Service Commission Decides in Favor of City of Skidmore.
Work to Start by March 15.

The Public Service Commission of the State of Missouri has decided that the C. B. & Q. Railway Co. must remove the stock yards from their present location in order to avoid danger to the pedestrian and vehicular traffic at the Elm Street crossing.

The original petition submitted to the Commission by the City of Skidmore asked that the yards be moved to a point about nine hundred feet south of the present location, and on the east side of the tracks. The first hearing was held before Special Examiner Bee at St. Joseph, July 20, 1920. At that time there was much opposition to the proposed location by residents in that part of town, and the City asked permission to amend its petition. The request was granted, and the amendment named a second location north of the overhead bridge. A second hearing was held at Skidmore, on November 10, 1920, before the same Special Examiner.

The Chief Engineer of the Commission visited the proposed locations and testified that it was not practical because at that point the tracks are located in a cut, and the expense of making the necessary excavation would be too great. The investigation made by the Commission showed that under ordinary conditions, trains approaching from the north would be plainly visible to the Elm street traffic; but during the season when stock shipments are heavy and many wagons are parked near the yards, the view is obstructed so that the crossing becomes dangerous. Also, during times o heavy shipments, sounds and odors from the yards often become offensive to guests at the hotel.

Both of the proposed locations having been found impracticable, it was decided that the City would be satisfied if 70 feet should be removed from the south side of the yards and an equal amount added to the north side; the grade of that portion which was removed reduced to the grade of the street; and the yards paved. The railway company agreed to the proposal, with the understanding that no more would be removed from the south side than could be removed and still allow sufficient room for five cars between the clearing point of the switch and the farthest south loading chute. Investigation showed that by excavating under the west end of the overhead bridge, the switch could be extended farther north, thus permitting of the removal of the entire 70 feet from the south side of the yards.

The substance of the order which has been issued by the Commission is as follows:
Not less than 70 feet is to be removed from the south side of the yards, and the grade of the portion removed shall be reduced to the grade of Elm street.

There shall be added to the north side of the present yards, and joined to them, an amount not less than that removed from the south side.

The switch is to be readjusted so as to accommodate not less than four 40-foot cars north of the most southerly loading chute.

The yards are to be paved with brick, cement, or other similar material.
Work is to be started not later than March 15, and completed by May 1.

The company has prepared a petition to reduce the size of the yards, and is circulating it among stock shippers here, supposedly with the purpose of again going before the Public Service Commission. The town board voted at a meeting Monday night to insist upon the enforcement of the order as issued.

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