Mercy Medical Center wants a new name —Mercy Parkway—for the street that runs along the eastern side of its property.

That street is currently called St. John's Parkway, and the Rolla Planning and Zoning Commission Tuesday night OK'd Mercy's request.

Now it's up to the Rolla City Council to decide.

"We just literally got this a day or two ago," Community Development Director John Petersen said as he distributed a letter from Mercy's local director, Dr. Randall D. Huss, to members of the commission.

That's why the name-changing request was not on the commission's agenda.

Here's the text of that letter:

"Dear John,

"As you know, during the construction of our Mercy facility in Rolla, Jack Dietzmann and Mercy jointly constructed a street connecting Martin Spring Drive and Bridge School Road, then added this street to the City of Rolla with the name of St. John's Parkway.

"Due to Mercy's subsequent initiative for uniform branding throughout our entire organization, we are no longer known as St. John's Health System or St. John's Clinic, rather Mercy Health and Mercy Clinic.

"We at Mercy, with Jack Dietzmann's approval, now respectfully request the City of Rolla undertake the process of changing the name of the city street named St. John's Parkway to Mercy Parkway.

"Mercy is willing to underwrite any associated costs of such name change.

"Please let me know what further steps we may need to take to further this request.

"Thank you and the Rolla City Council for your consideration of this request.


"Randall D. Huss, MD

"Rolla Division President

"Mercy Clinic

Petersen said three property owners are affected by the proposed name change. In addition to Mercy and Dietzmann, Gary Heavin is the other land owner.

There is no opposition to the change, Petersen said.

Commission members also voiced no opposition; indeed, there was no discussion. The change was unanimously supported by Janese Martin, Greg Sawyer, Robert Anderson, Monte Shields and Russell Schmidt. Don Brown, Dennis Bennett and Jack Morris were absent. Paul Stigall is the chairman.

Now the change proposal will to go the city council for first reading of a resolution at the Feb. 19 meeting. By state statute, the city must advertise the resolution and wait four weeks for reaction from landowners along the street. After that, the council can adopt an ordinance to make the name change official.