Future Options for Columbia's American Bottom
The beginnings of European settlement and economic development of the Columbia area and, in fact, the entire State of Illinois were in the American Bottom area along the Mississippi River. Two centuries later—for various reasons—more than 2,000 acres are still under agricultural use but primed for development along the curve of I-255 as it grazes the northwestern portion of Monroe County on the way to the Jefferson Barracks Bridge.
Today, as part of the Comprehensive Plan revision process, the Columbia Plan Commission has identified four (4) potential concepts for future development of the area, which are shown below.
|Concept 3 - Entertainment
This concept portrays more unique, one-of-a-kind-in-the-region uses--like a major sports facility and a museum or other cultural attraction--with corresponding lodging and retail development.
|Concept 4 - Regional Recreation
This concept shows the area developed as a regional recreation center with a variety of sports, interpretive and cultural uses and a more limited amount of commercial development and lodging.