Kansas City working to make downtown more walkable

Kansas City, Missouri, has been working (with mixed success so far) to make its downtown more walkable.

Downtown Kansas City and the I-670 freeway

A project now underway will make a real difference by making a series of bridges across I-670, which divides downtown from the Crossroads district, much more friendly for pedestrians:

This project will adhere to the City's established Downtown Streetscape Master Plan, and is designed to develop the Truman Road corridor into an inviting pedestrian conduit between the Crossroads District and downtown. Improvements will include intersection modifications, additional crosswalk safety features, decorative streetlights, new curbs and expanded Truman Road sidewalks. The project's design firm, HNTB Architects, also has incorporated an extensive landscaping scheme, which will include 90 trees and a line of evergreen shrubs planted along the I-670 south retaining wall.

The City improvement project is just one portion of the existing overhaul of the Truman Road corridor. The City, MoDot, the Downtown Council and Kansas City Power & Light are financing this $3.7 million restoration.

MoDot is completing structural rehabilitation and resurfacing work to the I-670 bridges from Baltimore Avenue to McGee Street.

In addition to the City and MoDot municipal infrastructure improvements, a series of innovative bridge guardrails will be installed this fall. Local artist Jim Woodfill, in partnership with el dorado inc., will design the guardrails. This public art project was born out of a public/private partnership established between the City, MoDot, the Downtown Council, the Crossroads Community Association, and the Gary Dickinson Family Charitable Foundation.

This project was designed to create a unique addition to downtown's existing landscape, and to further make the bridges an appealing and interactive passageway. Installation is scheduled to begin upon completion of the City's improvement project.

For driver and pedestrian safety, the City will install temporary chain link fencing on the Truman Road bridges until the art installation is complete.
Darby Trotter of Kansas City River Trails has been coordinating the design and installation of the pedestrian-friendly bridge improvements.