Advisory: Parking/traffic impacts for Armour Blvd related to completion of bike lane project.

Starting the week of Monday, June 11th, parking and traffic impacts will occur on Armour Boulvard to make way for work related to the completion of the parking-protected bike lanes on Armour Boulevard. Crews will begin permanent striping activities from Broadway to Main and continue to work eastward. As a result, lane reduction and on street parking impacts will occur in block by block sections.

The City asks that the public obeys the “No Parking” signs that will be placed along the corridor in advance of the work. The work will be completed by July 30th.

We have appreciated your patience and understanding as crews waited for the new street surface to cure before permanently striping the roadway. The new road configuration includes bike lanes in both directions, on street parking lanes and one travel lane in each direction for motorists. The bike lane is located between the parking lane and curb and motorists should not park in the bike lane.

We appreciate your patience with this temporary inconvenience as we improve the roadway and make it safer for you and your neighbors!

To see a rendering of the new streetscape set up and for more information on the project, please visit kcmo.gov/bikekc.

Rental property owners still have time to register/update property information

The City of Kansas City, Missouri, is reminding rental property owners to register, update, and verify information on their properties. Rental property must be registered annually as part of the Rental Registration and Inspection Program established 10 years ago.

“This registry is an important tool for the City to help neighborhoods fight blight and negative factors affecting their community,” said Mayor Pro Tem and 1st District At-Large Councilman Scott Wagner. “Knowing who the responsible parties are allows us to work toward solutions more quickly before problems get worse.”

Rental property owners are required to register with the Neighborhoods and Housing Services Department each year and registration can be completed online. Owners need to create a login before their rental property can be registered. Failure to register rental property results in monthly fines and administrative fees.

Vacant rental property also needs to be registered and can be registered online through the city’s website.

For more information, media can contact Neighborhoods and Housing Services Department Communications/Community Liaison John Baccala at (816) 513-3202. Rental property owners needing assistance can contact Carla Finch at (816) 513-9039.

City improves pedestrian safety in Brookside Neighborhood

New HAWK signal makes crosswalks easier to navigate

The City is upgrading a popular crosswalk. Since many people walk, run, and bike across 63rd Street near Brookside Plaza, the City has installed a HAWK signal to make the crossing safer for all.

A HAWK (high-intensity activated crosswalk signal) helps control vehicular traffic at mid-block crosswalks. The signal is equipped with a voice-command system to aid the visually impaired. Pedestrians can push the button to activate the signal and proceed when a walk sign is displayed, just like a regular traffic-signal crossing.

Here’s what drivers crossing at a HAWK signal need to know:

  1. Flashing yellow begins – slow down
  2. Solid yellow – prepare to stop
  3. Solid red – stop and stay stopped
  4. Flashing red traffic signal – stop, then proceed with caution if no one is present in the crosswalk

There already are several HAWK signals strategically located around the City. A few locations include 37th and Main, near Children’s Mercy Hospital on Gillham Road, and on Meyer Boulevard east of Troost.

The upgrades include new ADA curb ramps and improved sidewalks and are funded by 6th District PIAC dollars. The City’s Public Works department will monitor the new signal and make any needed adjustments.

For more information, please contact Public Works Public Information Officer Beth Breitenstein at Beth.Breitenstein@kcmo.org or by phone at 816-513-2612.

City Auditor’s Office recommends strengthening sustainable maintenance of Parks Department’s natural resources

The City Auditor’s Office released an audit of the Parks and Recreation Department’s environmentally sustainable practices for parkland maintenance. The audit focused on whether the department maximizes the use of environmentally sustainable practices to manage its natural resources.

Auditors concluded that the department has a few sustainable practices to preserve and restore parkland ecology. These practices include the planting of some native or regionally appropriate species, the removal of invasive species, pest management in parkland, and environmental planning for natural areas. Beyond these practices, the department’s park landscape maintenance activities largely focus on park aesthetics in the form of ornamental annual flowers and turf grass, both of which are not environmentally sustainable. Auditors determined that the department does not incorporate sustainable practices into many of the activities required to maintain these landscape features including watering, fertilizer and pesticide use, and mowing activities. In addition, although the department has incorporated some environmentally sustainable practices in its policies related to pesticide application, it does not always follow them.

Auditors also determined that the department does not have measurable goals to guide sustainable management of parkland. Most parkland does not have an environmental resource management plan to guide staff and contractors in the sustainable maintenance unique to a park or park type. Additionally, the department’s operations and maintenance manual does not incorporate sustainable maintenance practices.

The audit includes recommendations to strengthen the department’s sustainable maintenance of parkland natural resources. Management agreed with the recommendations.

View the complete report online at http://kcmo.gov/cityauditor/.

For more information, please contact Douglas Jones, City Auditor, at cityauditor@kcmo.org or (816) 513-3300.

KCMO City Council pushes for clean energy initiatives

Who needs the Paris Climate Agreement?

Kansas City, Missouri, is known for its green initiatives built into established programs to help produce a positive effect on the environment and maybe even the bottom line.This environmentally-conscious approach takes center stage during the Business Session on Thursday when the City Council receives a 26-page report highlighting measures to enhance this mission.

The “Feasibility of Clean Energy Initiatives” report was generated after councilmembers last August passed a resolution directing City Manager Troy Schulte to evaluate the implementation of certain methods to advance the City’s environmental goals related to the Paris Climate Agreement (known as the Renewable Energy Now Resolution).

The report contains information that was assembled over a seven-month period. It includes input received from local, state, regional and national sources who volunteered their time to participate in many discussions related to clean energy initiatives.

“The report on evaluating significant clean energy initiatives in Kansas City has positioned us to make major progress in achieving the goals in the City’s climate protection plan and in promoting social equity, environmental quality, and economic vitality for the benefit of all our residents,” said Councilmember Scott Taylor, one the resolution’s co-sponsors.

All of the initiatives are feasible, but some will require additional staff time and effort, with continued assistance from many of the sources that provided contributions to this evaluation, according to the report.

For more information on the report, contact Dennis Murphey at 816-513-3459.

Traffic Calming/Complete Streets Project Updates in Hyde Park

Spring is finally here and the warmer weather means more people will be out and about: bicycle riding, walking, running, doing yard work, and playing at parks! Spring also marks project season for many long-awaited bike projects and pedestrian improvements in KCMO. These projects will not only expand KCMO’s growing bicycle network, but also provide broader benefits to our neighborhood such as: much needed traffic calming, pedestrian improvements, safer intersections, and overall improved access for bicycles and pedestrians. This blog post is brought to you by Maggie Priesmeyer Green, North Hyde Park Rep and Director of Programs at BikeWalkKC.

  • Armour Boulevard Road Diet: slated for early summer 2018 construction and late summer completion (Broadway to Paseo). It includes pedestrian improvements at intersections and crossing Armour and the City’s first protected bike lane. The link is to a news article that was published on in February 2018.
  • Bike parking ordinance: a new and improved ordinance went into effect in February, allowing anyone to complete a streamlined permit application process for $25 and no additional annual fees to install bike racks at their business/home. Previous permitting fees were $196 and required additional annual fees. BikeWalkKC’s blog shares more. 
  • Gillham Road Bike Corridor Study: the purpose of the Planning Sustainable Places project was to identify potential improvements for a bicycle corridor on Gillham Road (18th Street to Brush Creek). The City held a public meeting in January, in partnership with their consultant team and Mid-America Regional Council to gauge neighborhood input on potential bike lane designs. This project was a planning study and construction is not funded at this time. 
  • Charlotte/Holmes Complete Streets project: will provide bicycle access from E 25th Street to E 36th Street on both Charlotte Street and Holmes Streets. Currently, the city and consultant team are finalizing design options. You can access the bikeway design options online. The green circles on the map represent where neighbors and stakeholders gave positive feedback.
  • Midtown Complete Streets Plan: in addition to a Complete Streets ordinance passed in December 2017, the City and Mid-America Regional Council are working through a comprehensive Complete Streets plan for Midtown KCMO. The Midtown/Plaza Area Plan recommended further study and planning of several potential Complete Streets upgrades to improve safety, livability, and mobility including sections of: Broadway, Southwest Trafficway, 39th Street, and 43rd Street.
  • Bike Share Stations in Hyde Park:

Join us on the Hyde Park Community Bike ride on Saturday, May 12!

Helpful resources for staying up to date and becoming more involved:

 

 

Curious to learn more or chat about pedestrian and bicycle issues? Contact: Maggie Green, North Hyde Park Representative and Director of Programs at BikeWalkKC

Lead to Read KC Program

NBC’s Lester Holt recently profiled Lead to Read KC, a reading program where volunteers with diverse professions  — marines, nurses, law enforcement — spend their lunch hour reading to elementary school children. You can view the feature by clicking here.

You can sign up to read at many KC schools, including Hyde Park’s neighborhood elementary school, Longfellow Elementary School.

KCPS 2018 Teacher of the Year

Kansas City Public Schools has selected Central Middle School math teacher Arjun Ravindran as its 2018 Teacher of the Year! Central Middle School is the zoned middle school for Hyde Park, as well as other neighborhoods in midtown, to the east, and south of Brush Creek. Central serves all students in grades 7-8 who live within their boundaries. Read more from KCPS by clicking here.

Mr. Ravindran teaches middle-level math and Algebra I at Central Middle School, where he has developed a positive reputation as a caring and challenging instructor who helps bring the best out in his students. As a runner-up for the 2017 Teacher of the Year Award, he used his prize money to help launch a National Junior Honor Society at the school.

It was the impact of teachers on his own life that convinced Ravindran to enter the profession.

“I believe teaching is one of the most important callings a person can have because transformative teachers empower their students to succeed. Shining a light on the successes of my students is something I set out to do every day,” he said. “Positive reinforcement is not only an important educational motivator. It also provides young people with a foundation of pride and self-worth, which they carry far beyond the walls of the classroom. My goal is to empower my students, enabling them to be a force for change in the community and the world.”

As the 2018 Teacher of the Year, Ravindran received a $5,000 instructional grant, a traveling trophy for his school, a personal trophy, a customized ring and his name added to a plaque at the Board of Education building. He will go on to represent KCPS for the Missouri Teacher of the Year Award.

Public Meeting: Midtown Complete Streets

April 17 @ 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm

The City of KCMO is studying several streets in Midtown for Complete Streets improvements, which could include things like bike lanes, sidewalk upgrades, road diets, and more.

It’s an exciting opportunity to improve the quality of life in Midtown and prioritize the safety of people walking and biking over cars. We need your voice added to those who support Complete Streets.

For more information, visit the BikeWalkKC website by clicking here.

Public Meeting on Tuesday, April 17th

6:00 pm to 8:00 pm
Westport Presbyterian Church
201 Westport Road, KCMO

Streetcar Funding Ballots

 

Many Hyde Parkers live in the Transportation Development District (TDD) for streetcar extension — for most of North, Central, and South Hyde park, the district line goes down the middle of Campbell street (those on the east side are not included), and south of 45th down the middle of Harrison. If you live in the TDD, you get to vote in the following elections:

 

 

PHASE 1 – VOTING TO CREATE THE TDD

Successfully completed!

PHASE 2 – ELECTING TDD DIRECTORS

Successfully completed!

PHASE 3 – VOTING TO FUND THE TDD

March 5 – Residents who live inside the boundaries of the TDD can begin applying to receive a ballot for the mail-in election.

April 3 – Applications for ballots to vote in the funding election are due by 5:00 pm.

May 1 – Ballots for the funding election are mailed to voters who requested them.

June 12 – Ballots for the funding election are due.

June 22 – Court certifies the election results.

In order to vote, you must request a ballot. Visit the ConnectKC website to request a ballot today.