The following list represents the top infrastructure priorities for the Downtown Neighborhood Association. We look forward to working with other Downtown neighborhoods and organizations to develop a shared list of priorities in accordance with the Greater Downtown Area Plan Implementation process.
3rd Street Improvements
The Downtown Neighborhood Association supports improvements to 3rd Street to enhance the walkability, safety, and livability along the street. As the character of the River Market becomes more residential and more residents live north of 3rd street, a number of conditions on the street are impacting the livability of the neighborhood, including:
- Intense truck traffic cutting through between the West Bottoms, East Bottoms, and major highways
- Generally unsafe traffic speeds in a high-pedestrian environment
- Lack of adequate sidewalks and curbless loading areas
- Unsafe intersections (extremely wide, lack of crosswalks, poor visibility, excess slip lanes)
- Deterioration of existing infrastructure
DNA understands that there is an existing City project to study access and transportation issues between River Market and the West Bottoms, but the scope of this project has very limited focus on walkability/livability improvements such as sidewalk upgrades, crossings, curb configurations, intersection modifications, or general infrastructure repair. We believe that these needs are critical regardless of the outcome of the access study.
Case Park / West Terrace Park
The Downtown Neighborhood Association supports the finalization of the KC Design Center preliminary master plan for Case Park, and a phased approach to implement recommended improvements. With one of the largest contiguous open spaces downtown, unparalleled panoramic views, and directly adjacent residential uses, this space is a unique and important amenity for downtown. However, we believe this park is not fulfilling its potential as a signature public gathering space that could enhance quality of life and catalyze new activity in the Quality Hill area. The preliminary master plan identifies concepts to activate the existing park space, create new dynamic public gathering spaces, and increase the visibility and integration of the park with the surrounding areas. These student concepts require vetting and professional design. DNA believes that these improvements will help to enhance Case / West Terrace Park as a downtown amenity and improve quality of life for residents of the west loop.
This request builds on recent progress in Case Park with funding of an off-leash dog park in Case Park, several years of planning effort, and an offer of private funding support. This request is also timely because of recent development proposals adjacent to the park. DNA believes that this new, park-fronting development provides an excellent opportunity to better integrate the park into the neighborhood and move forward with improvements.
Grand Boulevard Improvements
The Downtown Neighborhood Association supports improvement to Grand Boulevard to achieve the goal of making Grand a premier urban boulevard that includes all of the following components, integrated in a thoughtful and well-designed manner: increased transit service, a safe and comfortable bikeway, green infrastructure, public spaces, and a destination linear park experience.
Grand Boulevard is an important priority for downtown because of its potential to transform the area, attract new residents and businesses, and improve the quality of life for residents and visitors. This project is important in part because it links many of the downtown neighborhoods: River Market, Downtown Loop, Crossroads, and Crown Center.
DNA understands that there are several overlapping initiatives for Grand Boulevard, including the Making Grand Grand Plan, KCATA efforts to create a transit corridor, Public Works efforts to create a downtown bike loop, and a traffic analysis utilizing the City’s Downtown Traffic Model. DNA implores the City and KCATA to coordinate behind a unified vision for Grand that satisfies the goals of all constituencies, and to move forward with incremental investments in this shared vision.
Northeast Loop Connectivity Project
The Downtown Neighborhood Association supports efforts to realize the potential of Admiral Boulevard by transforming it and the surrounding area into a multimodal link between Downtown, Columbus Park, Paseo West and the Northeast.
- Make Admiral Blvd. a Complete Street: Maximize benefit of the existing right-of-way by reconfiguring or reducing traffic lanes for its entire length to reflect actual traffic demands. Add bike lanes along the entire length of the corridor and allow on-street parking where it is missing. Improve pedestrian crossings along Admiral, specifically at Oak & Locust.
- Enhance the Bike KC Network: Sign Admiral as the official bike route between Downtown and the Northeast. The gentle grade of Admiral out of downtown, connections to existing bike routes on both Grand & Woodland, as well as its ample width make it a logical choice for a bike route.
- No More One-Ways: Convert Admiral Blvd, 7th, 8th and 9th Streets to two-way to facilitate local circulation in the northeast corner of the loop and make these streets more livable.
- Walkable Downtown: Improve pedestrian connectivity between Downtown and Columbus Park by closing the sidewalk gap on 6th Street in the block west of Charlotte. Add underpass lighting to the I-70 bridge over Charlotte to create an attractive link between Downtown and Columbus Park.
- Streetcar Synergy: Both ends of the proposed Admiral Blvd. corridor tie into Streetcar routes – the west end at 7th & Main is on the starter line, and the east end is a block away from the Independence Avenue line.
- Simplify Transit: A two-way Admiral would allow for simplified routing of the #24 bus.
- Inform & Entice: Add way-finding signs to the area to encourage exploration of these downtown-adjacent neighborhoods and to welcome residents of those neighborhoods into downtown.
Quality Hill Lighting Improvements
The Downtown Neighborhood Association supports the repair, upgrade and expansion of street lighting in the historic Quality Hill neighborhood.