KCATA Launches RideKC East-West Transit Study

The RideKC East-West Transit Study was initiated by the Kansas City Area Transportation Authority (KCATA), in cooperation with several project partners.

The study will assess a high-capacity east-west transit connection between the area around the University of Kansas Health System campus in Kansas City, Kansas, and the area around the Truman Athletic Complex (Kauffman Stadium and Arrowhead Stadium) in Kansas City, Mo.

Partners in the RideKC East-West Transit Study project include the Kansas City Streetcar Authority (KCSA); the City of Kansas City, Missouri (KCMO); Unified Government of Wyandotte County; Kansas City, Kansas. (U G); and the University of Kansas Hospital Authority. This study is unique because it is a multi-party, bi-state effort to analyze the technical and financial feasibility of high-capacity east-west transit connections across the state line.

“With the KC Streetcar Main Street Extension under construction and the Riverfront Extension due to start in 2023, now is the time to plan for future connections,” said Tom Gerend, Executive Director of the KC Streetcar Authority. “The Main Street Extension will serve as the backbone of the area’s transit system, connecting to a multitude of Kansas City communities. But this work can only be done successfully by working with our communities to build a transit system that fits their needs and goals.

The corridor includes connections to the KC Streetcar Main Street Extension, as well as North-South RideKC MAX BRT and bus services on both sides of the state line. Building on previous studies that identified specific corridors as potential transit opportunities, the project study area extends from Rainbow Blvd. to the west and the Truman Sports Complex to the east, and 31st Street to the north and 43rd Street to the south.

The project team is seeking community input to help determine study needs and priorities to build a better-connected regional transit system. Feedback is critical to ensuring the future of high-capacity transit in Kansas City is equitable and transformative. In addition to public and community meetings, the project team will host a series of one-on-one interviews, advisory committee meetings, and presentations throughout the study to keep the public connected.

“Community input is critical to closing the existing east-west transportation gaps in our region,” said Robbie Makinen, President and CEO of KCATA. “We want to understand the needs of the community first, and then use the feedback we receive to help guide the study.”

There are several opportunities for people to provide feedback during the East-West Study:

  • A survey seeking feedback on transit needs and priorities is available on the project website and open until Friday, June 17, 2022. The survey is also available in Spanish. Participants can request that a paper survey be mailed by emailing [email protected] or calling 816-346-0300.
  • A public meeting is tentatively scheduled for late summer 2022.
  • Later this fall, the community will be invited to participate in a workshop to weigh in on options for aligning transit corridors and modes.
  • Later this summer, the project team will launch an interactive study map showing alignment and transportation mode options. The community will be able to leave comments and share ideas through this website.

Melvin Z. Madore