UG Completes Major Connector to Region’s Historic Trail System

mayor-holland_kaw-point-connector_2016The Unified Government celebrated the completion of one of the most vital links to the historic Heritage Trail System today during a special ribbon cutting ceremony held at Kaw Point River Front Park. The newly completed bike trail will now open one of the region’s most historical parks to more bicycling and walking events.

“This is a very exciting day for all of us committed to a regional trail system in the Kansas City area,” said Mayor/CEO Mark Holland of the Unified Government of Wyandotte County and Kansas City, Kansas. “With the completion of this connector, our trail system in Kansas City, Kansas, is now linked to the rest of metropolitan area, giving bicyclists, runners, and walkers a convenient and safe way to cross the state line.”

The Riverfront Heritage Trail system covers approximately 15 miles and connects all of the most significant and historic sites along the Kansas and Missouri rivers. The trail not only showcases the waterfront, but it also highlights our local and regional heritage. Jeff Perry is a resident of Kansas City, Missouri and says he enjoys riding the new trail system in KCK. “This is really a vital part of history. This is probably the most historic site in Kansas City where Lewis and Clark came through. It’s the gateway to the west. That’s what people want to come see here,” says Perry.

When talking about the history of Kaw Point River Front Park, no one is more enthusiastic about engaging in the discussion than Mike Calwell, Chairman of the Board of Directors for Friends of Kaw Point, Inc. Dressed as Patrick Gass, a sergeant that played an important role in the Lewis and Clark Expedition from 1804 to 1806, Calwell shared his thoughts about the significance of the bike trail connector.

“This park is a tremendous asset to our community. We need to help raise the awareness of the park amongst the younger generation,” he says. This will help attract volunteers that can help us improve and preserve this history landmark.”

The newly completed trail connector also provides an access point to Kaw Point Park for residents using the sidewalk and bike network located on 5th Street along Jersey Creek in downtown KCK. Trail systems bring a variety of benefits to cities throughout the country. They provide safer routes for bicyclists, pedestrians, and homeowners that are looking for walking and trail amenities.

“Today marks a very important milestone for bike riders, Joggers, walkers and all of us who love the outdoors,” says Commissioner Gayle Townsend. “Too many of our residents have had to travel outside of our community to experience an attractive setting for jogging, cycling, and walking. However, as of today, that is no longer the case!”

“I grew up in Wyandotte County and now live in Johnson County, but it’s a lot of fun for me to bring my friends over here and they see what a great place it is. We’ve ridden all over Kansas City, Kansas from Central Ave. out to the Quindaro Ruins, down to Kaw Point Park, on the trails and on the road. So this is going to enhance that experience a lot,” Susan Fischer said.

Other local benefits to investments in a trail system include economic impacts that result in increased tourism, urban redevelopment projects, health improvements due to increased physical activity and general consumer spending.

“Bike and walking trails build a sense of community and help people feel more bonded together as part of their community. So I think it’s money well spent and has a long term affect,” says bicyclist Linda Jordan. “This project also furthers my commitment to creating an infrastructure that makes it easier for our residents to become more active and engage in healthy behaviors,” says Holland.

There was a great deal of engineering that went into the project. At a cost of $2.6 million, the development took more than 10 years from conceptualization to construction. The trail begins at an interstate interchange, crosses the Union Pacific Railroad on a four-lane bridge, twisting down between an interstate on-ramp bridge, then crossing under a four-lane bridge that crosses over an Army Corps of Engineers floodwall, and connecting to Kaw Point Park with minimal disturbance to the area.

The UG partnered with multiple agencies on the project which included the Kansas Department of Transportation, City of Kansas City, Mo., Kansas City River Trails, Inc., Kaw Valley Drainage District, TranSystems, the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism, and the US Army Corp of Engineers.

Construction of the trail began early 2016 and this connection is not the final piece of the trail. The new trail system actually makes room for additional trail development along the Kansas River to the north of the park. The trail is also accessible to visitors with disabilities. “Our hope is that the presence of the connector trail will help make Kaw Point Park a destination of choice for all lovers of the outdoors,” says Commissioner Townsend.

The event also provided an opportunity to highlight the installation of a metal artwork of Lewis and Clark on the new state-of-the-art Kaw Point Industrial Park office building.

The metal artwork was part of the development agreement with NorthPoint Development and the Unified Government as part of a way to give back to the community. The mural provides a nice silhouette of the mural at night when it illuminates. This makes the artwork easily visible from I-70, which provides a locator for people to find their way to the park.

Construction of the mural was $35,000.

BPU Board to Review 2017 Proposed Budget

bpu-logo_fbThe Kansas City Board of Public Utilities (BPU) Board of Directors will be reviewing the 2017 proposed budget during two work sessions to be held on Thursday, December 8th and Friday, December 9th.

Both workshops will be held from 12:00 noon until 5:00 PM at the BPU Administration Building located at 540 Minnesota Avenue, KCK.

Thursday’s workshop will consist of budget reviews for the Administrative Division; Customer Service; Purchasing/Supply and Human Resources.

Friday’s workshop will review the proposed budgets for the Water Division; Electric Production Division; Electric Supply Division and Electric Operations & Technology.

The final budget will be presented to the Board for their approval during the December 21st Board meeting.

About BPU
BPU’s water department was created in 1909, and its electric utility was operational in 1912. The purpose of the utility, then and to this day, is to provide the highest quality electric and water services at the lowest possible cost. Today the publicly owned utility serves approximately 63,000 electric and 50,000 water customers, primarily in Wyandotte County, Kansas. The mission of the utility and its employees is “to focus on the needs of our customers, to improve the quality of life in our community while promoting safe, reliable and sustainable utilities.” BPU’s Web site is

Job Alert: Temporary Surveyor, University of Kansas

University of Kansas Logo
Title: Temporary Surveyor
Work Schedule: Various hours will be worked between 7:30am – 8:00pm
Position Overview: The Work Group for Community Health and Development,, is seeking part-time temporary employees to go door to door in Kansas City, Kansas conducting surveys.

Job Description (Responsibilities – 100%)

  • Conduct door-to-door surveys in Kansas City, Kansas.
  • Conduct observations of physical activity and food purchase environments.
  • Complete survey and observation tracking documentation.
  • Report to supervisor about procedures and challenges in the field.

Required Qualifications

  • High school diploma or GED equivalency.
  • Fluency in Spanish (to be addressed on the application materials).
  • Must provide own transportation.
  • Must be at least 18 years old and provide proof of age.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Experience conducting surveys or observations.
  • Six months of experience with helping coordinate and organize work.
  • Excellent written communication skills as evidenced by application materials.

Additional Candidate Instruction:  Complete the online application and include references. A cover letter and resume are not necessary. However, applicants must show that they meet the required qualifications.

Review of applications begins on December 1, 2016, and continues as needed to collect a pool of qualified applicants.
Contact Information to Applicants Please contact Monica Mendez at (913) 439-9349 or Michelle Kampfer at (785) 864-0533 or email with any questions.

Advertised Salary Range $14.00 hour

Application Review Begins 01-Dec-2016

Disclaimer: The University of Kansas prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, national origin, age, ancestry, disability, status as a veteran, sexual orientation, marital status, parental status, gender identity, gender expression and genetic information in the University’s programs and activities. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Executive Director of the Office of Institutional Opportunity and Access,, 1246 W. Campus Road, Room 153A, Lawrence, KS, 66045, (785)864-6414, 711 TTY.

Newsletter Feature from Chuck – November 21, 2016

Good day. On behalf of our staff and our board, we hope for you and yours a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday.

This edition of our newsletter again focuses on our 2 main concerns: business development and housing.

We start with the continuing economic development support DTSKCK is providing small businesses in Downtown Kansas City, KS.  Below, Adrian Bermudez receives a DTSKCK Small Business Grant for his Indios Carbonsitos food truck. Indios has been a featured food truck several times at our Food Truck Friday events over the past 2 years. He recently was one of the featured trucks at the Mayor’s Downtown Holiday Lighting Festival. We appreciate Adrian participating in our Downtown efforts.

To date, DTSKCK has awarded nearly $5,000 to Downtown small businesses. I personally want to thank our board which had the vision to make these grants part of our investment in Downtown. The grant application can be found by clicking here.

On the housing front, we invite you to our November 30 Quarterly Meeting to hear Kelley Hrabe, principal with Prairie Fire Development Group. Mr. Hrabe will speak of a proposed development associated with the Healthy Campus effort, also known as the Downtown Parkway District. We will meet from 5:30 to 7:00 PM at MM Companies, LLC, 912 Minnesota Avenue, Kansas City, KS.


The proposal calls for an initial build of some 80 apartment units, complete with pocket parks and agri-hood space. Following is a concept drawing of the proposal. All are welcome to attend the presentation. We do ask you to RSVP so we can be sure to make proper preparations. Call (913) 371-0705, send e-mail to, or click here to RSVP online.

Downtown has a lot to be thankful for and there is much more to come. Come be a part of Downtown KC, KS. Come be a part of everyone’s Downtown.

Job Alert: Healthy Living Enthusiast, HNMA

The Historic Northeast-Midtown Association is seeking to hire a part-time healthy living enthusiast.

PT Employee: 15 hours/week @ $10.50/hour

Job Description: Promote the adoption of healthy living habits in the HNMA service area by promoting walking clubs and other active living opportunities to residents and through neighborhood associations.

Duties include collecting information about the community’s walkability, organizing and convening the Parkwood Park and Jersey Creek Walk Clubs, and conducting resident surveys about parks and infrastructure.

Please contact HNMA at (913) 573-2010 for more information.

Small Business Resources for November, 2016

How to Write a Business Plan
Online | 30 Minutes
Description: This course explains the importance of business planning, defines and describes the components of a business plan, and provides access to sample plans and resources that can help you develop a very good business plan.

Click here for a transcript.

Young Entrepreneurs
Online | 30 Minutes
Description: This course introduces young entrepreneurs to the basics of creating and financing a successful business. You will learn to evaluate your ideas, choose the best financing options and legally register your business. The course will point you to the resources you need on your entrepreneurial journey.

Click here for a transcript.

Understanding Your Customer
Online | 30 Minutes
Description: Knowing your customer is a vital part of effectively selling your product or service. This course will introduce you to tools and resources that will help you understand your customer and increase sales.

Click here for a transcript.

Sales: A Guide for the Small Business Owner
Online | 30 Minutes
Description: You have a great product or service. Now you have to sell it. This course will give you an overview of sales plans and other tools to get your product or service into your customer/consumer’s hands.

Click here for a transcript.

Social Media Marketing
Online | 30 Minutes
Description: Are you using Social Media to help increase sales of your product or service? Do you lack the basic knowledge to take advantage of the incredible marketing reach that social media offers? This course is designed to show you how to utilize social media marketing to grow your business. You will learn research processes and strategies to help you harness the power of social media marketing.

Click here for a transcript.

Children of KCK officers Melton and Lancaster to flip switch at Mayor’s Downtown Holiday Lighting Festival

Downtown Holiday Lighting FestivalThe children of Kansas City, Kansas, Police Capt. David Melton and Det. Brad Lancaster will flip the switch Friday evening, November 18, for the city’s Downtown Holiday Lighting ceremony. The two police veterans lost their lives in separate shootings earlier this year.

The annual festival, organized by Mayor Mark Holland’s office and community partners, will run from 4:00 pm to 7:30 PM at the City Hall Plaza, 701 N. 7th Street. The lights are scheduled to go on at 7:15 PM.

Each year, the Mayor’s office honors a special guest to throw the switch to light the Mayor’s Christmas tree. Mayor Holland invited the Melton and Lancaster children to participate this year as a way to show public support for the families and for all law enforcement officials during the holidays.

The festival is a large celebration for the community attended by hundreds of children and their families. Goodie bags will be handed out to the first 1,000 children. Holiday movies, free popcorn, crafts and games are provided for all children. The event also features music and the announcement of the neighborhood tree contest winners.

This event would not be possible without numerous sponsors and in-kind donors: Board of Public Utilities, Calendar Pressroom Printing, First Federal Bank of Kansas City, 7th Street Casino, Hughes Development Company, Inc., W. Conrad Miller, Jr. and Martin M. Quinn, Bank of Labor, Glenn’s Pre-Owned Appliances, Wyandot, Inc., Rental City, Cork House, McAnany Van Cleave and Phillips PA, Kansas City, Kansas Convention and Visitor’s Bureau, BHC RHODES, Kansas Gas Service, KMDI, The Kansas City Cupcake Company, AMC Theaters, Velvet Crème, Sunfresh, United Way of Wyandotte County, KCK Public Library, Have Guns Will Rent Costumes and Props, KCKPD, KCKFD, NRC, USD 500, Downtown Improvement District, Downtown Shareholders of Kansas City, Kansas.

Almost there! Housing our Homeless Veterans

mayor-marok-holland_ug-headerTwo years ago, Kansas City, Kansas and Kansas City, Missouri, committed to ending veterans’ homelessness by the end of 2016. I am proud to say that we have nearly met that goal.

When we joined the Mayor’s Challenge to End Veteran Homelessness (which coincided with a national initiative called Zero: 2016), our two cities had 421 homeless veterans. Today, that number stands at 33. This tremendous progress gives me confidence that soon every veteran in our community will have a place to call home.

Almost as impressive as this result is the level of coordination that has taken place in such a short time to reach this goal. Numerous agencies have worked together to identify best practices for housing veterans and to give them the support they need to stay housed. The Department of Veterans Affairs, Salvation Army, reStart Inc., Catholic Charities, Continuum of Care organizations, Kim Wilson Housing, and many others broke down silos while staying focused on their specific goal.

In the process, these organizations have improved channels of communication and forged new partnerships. They’ve strengthened relationships with landlords. And they’ve identified effective ways to keep our veterans housed once they do find a home.

To all who participated in this huge undertaking: Thank you! You have given hope to hundreds of veterans who have given so much.

Mayor Mark Holland

Boil Water Advisory Issued for the City Edwardsville, SW KCK and Lake of the Forest

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) have issued a boil water advisory for the public water supply located in the City of Edwardsville, Southwest Kansas City, Kansas and Lake of the Forest.  KDHE officials issued the advisory because of a loss of pressure. Failure to maintain adequate pressure may result in a loss of chlorine residuals and bacterial contamination. This is a result of a main break located near 86th Street and Interstate 70.  The 2,700 customers impacted are in an area generally bounded on the North by I-70, 72nd Street on the East, 118th Street extended on the West and the Kansas River on the South and a smaller area bounded by Tauromee Avenue on the North, 72nd Street on the East and 78th Street on the West.

Boil Order Advisory Map

The advisory took effect on November 17, and will remain in effect until conditions which place the system at risk of contamination are deemed by KDHE officials to be adequately resolved.
If customers have questions, they may contact BPU Customer Service at 913-573-9190.

Customers should observe the following precautions until further notice:

  • Boil water for one minute prior to drinking or food preparation, or use bottled water.
  • Dispose of ice cubes and do not use ice from a household automatic icemaker.
  • Disinfect dishes and other food contact surfaces by immersion for at least one minute in clean tap water that contains one teaspoon of unscented household bleach per gallon of water.
  • Water used for bathing does not generally need to be boiled. Supervision of children is necessary while bathing so that water is not ingested.
  • Persons with cuts or severe rashes may wish to consult their physicians.
  • If your tap water appears dirty, flush the water lines by letting the water run until it clears.

Public water suppliers in Kansas take all measures necessary to notify customers quickly after a system failure. Regardless of whether it’s the supplier or KDHE that announces a boil water advisory, KDHE will issue the rescind order following testing at a certified laboratory.

Job Alert: Meetings and Sports Sales Manager, Visit KCK

This position is closed

Employment Opportunity with the Kansas City Kansas Convention & Visitors Bureau

Position: Meetings and Sports Sales Manager
Posted Date: November 2, 2016

The Kansas City Kansas Convention & Visitors Bureau has an opening for a Meeting and Sports Sales Manager. This full-time position is located in downtown Kansas City, KS and is available starting January 3, 2017. Responsibilities are to maximize revenues for meetings / conventions and sports related events by generating leads, direct sales, servicing and marketing to business, association, government, and sports markets. Will work closely with other sales and marketing staff to bring new business to Kansas City KS. Occasional day and overnight travel will be required for tradeshows, convention,s and partnership meetings.


  • Prior hospitality sales experience a plus
  • Professional and hospitable oral and written communication skills
  • Strong customer service skills
  • Proficient basic computer skills, knowledge of Simpleview CRM a plus
  • General knowledge of Kansas City KS and the entire KC metro area
  • Ability to create and express excitement for visitors to Kansas City KS and the entire KC metro area
  • Able to follow through in a team environment with limited supervision
  • Attention to detail
  • Ability to set up trade show booth, transport materials and stand several hours at a time
  • Valid driver’s license, vehicle and insurance

Resumes should be sent to:
Kansas City Kansas Convention & Visitors Bureau
Attn: Bridgette Jobe
PO Box 171517
Kansas City, KS 66117

. . .
The mission of the Kansas City Kansas Convention & Visitors Bureau is to market Kansas City Kansas as a visitor destination and to increase the number of overnight stays.