Council members support retaining Andy Devine name for now

Andy Devine Avenue will remain at least until the June 16 Kingman City Council meeting.

Council members Monday discussed how to emphasize Route 66 and Kingman as the "Heart of Route 66" while maintaining the current designation of Andy Devine Avenue.

The question came before them at the request of the Route 66 Association of Kingman, a nonprofit group organized by area business people working to increase tourism and renovate downtown.

The group believes the name change would acknowledge Kingman as the "Heart of Route 66" and better identify the Route 66 business loop through Kingman for travelers, spokesman Tom Spear said.

"We cannot deny the horsepower of Route 66 as a tourist draw," Spear said.

"Route 66 is known all over the world and is Kingman's best marketing lure."

Councilman Ray Lyons said everyone he has talked to opposed changing the name of Andy Devine Avenue to Route 66.

Councilman Dave French said a well-marked Route 66 would be recognizable by tourists with Andy Devine Avenue keeping the present name.

He supported a dual designation.

Mayor Les Byram said the Devine family has been a strong supporter of Kingman and deserves consideration.

"I have heard lots of comments on the name change in the past two weeks," Byram said.

"All were against.

It is difficult to change a landmark."

Councilman Frank McVey said Andy Devine Avenue was named and announced on national television by Ralph Edwards on "This Is Your Life."

In making his case for the name change and increased tourist recognition, Spear emphasized the frequent turnover of tourist dollars in a local economy.

Councilwoman Monica Gates said the Internet brings up Kingman with Route 66 but not with Andy Devine.

She said it is time to market Route 66 with a name change.

The council referred the issue to staff for more research and options for dual designation.

Council members also requested more information from the Arizona Department of Transportation.

U.S.

Postal Service officials say they need at least six months notice for a name change.

Andy Devine was a western movie and television actor who grew up in Kingman.

His father managed the Beale Hotel.

He is honored annually by the Andy Devine Days parade and rodeo, a room at the Mohave Museum of History and Arts and the Andy public service awards.

The council Monday also conducted public hearings about recommendations from the Kingman Planning and Zoning Commission.

The council:

• Approved by a 6-0 vote the preliminary plat for Mission Hills commercial subdivision at the southwest corner of Hualapai Mountain Road and Slaughterhouse Canyon Road.

• Approved 6-0 the preliminary plat for Shalimar Plaza commercial subdivision on Stockton Hill Road south of Morrow Avenue.

• Approved 6-0 rezoning on Rainbow Drive south of Gordon Drive from R-2 to R-MH-20 residential to allow for splitting the parcel into two home sites.

• Sent a request to rezone one acre on Rainbow drive between Shangri-La Drive and Kino Avenue for possible lot splitting back to planning and zoning staff for more information about drainage problems in the area.

The Planning and Zoning Commission had recommended denial with a 6-1 vote.