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Old 01-21-2014, 12:00 PM
 
Location: Washington, DC area
10,994 posts, read 20,623,638 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aviastar View Post
KC has a pretty vibrant scene already...it's just a bit more diffuse and scattered than most east coast cities. I have lived in east coast cities...the great thing about KC is you get a lot of the vibrancy (especially when it comes to sports-related and music-related things) without all the crowds in one place. Trust me, there is nothing more miserable than trying to cram into NYC or Boston subway car in the dead of winter and having so many people trying to pack in that you can barely breathe. I really don't like to deal with enormous crowds in one place, and that's one of the big perks about KC. You can find your vibrant scene in almost any nook/corner of the metro area without having it being too popular.

KC is probably the best place I have lived...except sometimes I miss Orlando-area weather.
yea, where KC shines in the accessibility of what it does offer. I would say that KC offers "most" of the culture of a city of 3-4 million without most of the hassle. We go to NHL or MLB games or Kennedy Center or even something simple like an auto show at the DC convention center etc it can be more of a challenge at times. In KC, I would come home from work and pick up the family, hit a ballgame and be home by the ten pm news. Events at the kc convention center are a walk in the park, even during the week. That's just not doable in this area so you have to reserve larger time slots and plan more.

But at the same time while people in KC freak out over non-existent urban parking problems or traffic and complain about how expensive it is to even do most things when they are all dirt cheap there, I actually like talking the trains and walking to the ballparks and honestly, even when we drive into the city and park in a garage, once you live in the area and learn everything it's just as easy to drive to Verizon Center or Kennedy Center or Nationals/Camden Yards or Georgetown etc as it was in KC. I prefer the hustle and bustle. I like going to ballgames on a Tuesday night and there still being 28-30k at the park and I like walking through Chinatown en route to a NHL game or concert.

KC has plenty to do for a city of its size, but I have found since leaving KC that I prefer slightly larger cities. The DC/Baltimore/Annapolis area is just amazing. There is actually too much to do and that means there is always so much to do that you have to decide and choose things over others. I like taking transit, I like having literally hundreds of miles of very popular bike trails, I like having more pro sports teams around, I like living near the bay yet being only an hour or two from several ski resorts and only a few hours from the Ocean City beaches. I like that we can drive into Philly and do things there and come back the same day. Yea, this area has traffic, tolls, etc. But none of that bothers me. Heck, I even prefer the traffic out here, people drive fast and aggressive which I prefer over the passive aggressive drivers in KC that hog left lanes, drive under speed limits and never put down cell phones. I like having three major airports that will get you ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD will much lower travel time because I don't have to connect even though they might take 20 extra minutes to navigate. Some people (most people in KC) are miserable in areas like this. This area is right up my alley.

That doesn't mean I don't like KC. People misunderstand that.

Last edited by kcmo; 01-21-2014 at 12:11 PM..
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Old 01-21-2014, 08:10 PM
 
99 posts, read 90,182 times
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So I first moved here LONG after Kay Barnes was mayor...but apparently the debt service on the KC Power and Light District is an absolute financial nightmare. The city is trying to rework the deal so that it can extend the repayment period and lessen annual debt service (which is $14M more than the $6M in annual income generated by the District). So the question is, why would we as a city want to further add to debt service problems by tacking an unnecessary complete terminal rebuild (rather than remodel/downsize) in the first place?

My point is, turning downtown into a "vibrant" space has a tremendous civic cost - and the city went about it by issuing a lot of debt. Debt spending and large bond issuance may be the way other cities pay for "vibrant" unorganically evolved districts like the P+L, but I think KC should seek to differentiate itself by being a model of responsible fiscal discipline rather than lavish and unwise spending on boondoggle projects. Form follows function - and KCI is completely functional.
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Old 01-21-2014, 11:07 PM
 
Location: Kansas City, MO
3,572 posts, read 6,887,342 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by s.davis View Post
KCI new airport study is out, including a breakdown of where in the region passengers come from:

63% are from Clay, Platte and Jackson.

35% are from the Kansas side, including Wyandotte.

Maybe moving the airport closer to the cars in the parking lot wouldn't be the best idea after all.
Interesting. That's surprising. If you were just talking KS vs MO including outside the metro area it wouldn't be as surprising considering MO's larger population. Where can these stats be found?
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Old 01-22-2014, 10:47 AM
 
Location: Washington, DC area
10,994 posts, read 20,623,638 times
Reputation: 6024
Quote:
Originally Posted by aviastar View Post
So I first moved here LONG after Kay Barnes was mayor...but apparently the debt service on the KC Power and Light District is an absolute financial nightmare. The city is trying to rework the deal so that it can extend the repayment period and lessen annual debt service (which is $14M more than the $6M in annual income generated by the District). So the question is, why would we as a city want to further add to debt service problems by tacking an unnecessary complete terminal rebuild (rather than remodel/downsize) in the first place?

My point is, turning downtown into a "vibrant" space has a tremendous civic cost - and the city went about it by issuing a lot of debt. Debt spending and large bond issuance may be the way other cities pay for "vibrant" unorganically evolved districts like the P+L, but I think KC should seek to differentiate itself by being a model of responsible fiscal discipline rather than lavish and unwise spending on boondoggle projects. Form follows function - and KCI is completely functional.
If you moved to KC long after Barnes, you have no idea how bad that area of downtown was. The vast majority of the money spent on the P&L district was not to build the restaurants and nightclubs. It was used to acquire extremely blighted structures and surface parking lots, relocate and rebuild underground utilities, remove and rebuild streets, traffic signals, streetlights, landscaping, build parking garages (which also serve Sprint Center and other downtown venues).

Basically work that needed to be done anyway. KCMO completely removed and rebuilt a large portion of its downtown, a part of Downtown that had not been touched in many decades that had nothing but half used parking lots, haunted houses and vacant structures. KC actually had haunted houses that were used one month out of the year in the middle of its downtown central business district, I don't think people realize just how bizarre that is for a major metropolitan city to have such a poorly looking and performing area in the middle of a downtown. There would likely be no Sprint Center, no renovated Midland Theater, no grocery store, no renovated President Hotel, no Kauffman Performing Arts Center and much of the renovated and proposed projects (condos, hotels etc) that have occurred in the area would not have happened.

KCMO invested in a MAJOR downtown infrastructure project and an entertainment district was then constructed on this new portion of downtown. Whether you like or support the P&L district or not (yes it caters to tourists and suburbanites, big deal), that project single handedly saved downtown from being the only major city save Detroit to remain a complete disaster into the 2000's.

Yes, it was expensive, but the money was well spent.

And once again, I will never EVER understand why a project like the P&L district gets so much negative attention by locals while suburban greenfield projects like Village West and Prairie Fire which get FAR more public money that goes strait to the actual developers rather than urban infrastructure improvements are completely justified. I will never understand KC area residents mentality.
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Old 01-22-2014, 12:03 PM
 
13,699 posts, read 16,536,920 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kcmo View Post
If you moved to KC long after Barnes, you have no idea how bad that area of downtown was. The vast majority of the money spent on the P&L district was not to build the restaurants and nightclubs. It was used to acquire extremely blighted structures and surface parking lots, relocate and rebuild underground utilities, remove and rebuild streets, traffic signals, streetlights, landscaping, build parking garages (which also serve Sprint Center and other downtown venues).

Basically work that needed to be done anyway. KCMO completely removed and rebuilt a large portion of its downtown, a part of Downtown that had not been touched in many decades that had nothing but half used parking lots, haunted houses and vacant structures. KC actually had haunted houses that were used one month out of the year in the middle of its downtown central business district, I don't think people realize just how bizarre that is for a major metropolitan city to have such a poorly looking and performing area in the middle of a downtown. There would likely be no Sprint Center, no renovated Midland Theater, no grocery store, no renovated President Hotel, no Kauffman Performing Arts Center and much of the renovated and proposed projects (condos, hotels etc) that have occurred in the area would not have happened.

KCMO invested in a MAJOR downtown infrastructure project and an entertainment district was then constructed on this new portion of downtown. Whether you like or support the P&L district or not (yes it caters to tourists and suburbanites, big deal), that project single handedly saved downtown from being the only major city save Detroit to remain a complete disaster into the 2000's.

Yes, it was expensive, but the money was well spent.

And once again, I will never EVER understand why a project like the P&L district gets so much negative attention by locals while suburban greenfield projects like Village West and Prairie Fire which get FAR more public money that goes strait to the actual developers rather than urban infrastructure improvements are completely justified. I will never understand KC area residents mentality.
Yada yada yada. More of the same mantra from kcmo - Missouri good, Kansas bad. *yawn*
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Old 01-22-2014, 01:00 PM
 
Location: Florida and New England
1,504 posts, read 1,611,804 times
Reputation: 2182
Quote:
Originally Posted by kcmo View Post
If you moved to KC long after Barnes, you have no idea how bad that area of downtown was. The vast majority of the money spent on the P&L district was not to build the restaurants and nightclubs. It was used to acquire extremely blighted structures and surface parking lots, relocate and rebuild underground utilities, remove and rebuild streets, traffic signals, streetlights, landscaping, build parking garages (which also serve Sprint Center and other downtown venues).

Basically work that needed to be done anyway. KCMO completely removed and rebuilt a large portion of its downtown, a part of Downtown that had not been touched in many decades that had nothing but half used parking lots, haunted houses and vacant structures. KC actually had haunted houses that were used one month out of the year in the middle of its downtown central business district, I don't think people realize just how bizarre that is for a major metropolitan city to have such a poorly looking and performing area in the middle of a downtown. There would likely be no Sprint Center, no renovated Midland Theater, no grocery store, no renovated President Hotel, no Kauffman Performing Arts Center and much of the renovated and proposed projects (condos, hotels etc) that have occurred in the area would not have happened.
Downtown KC became a ghost town back in the 1970s. There was little activity in the 1980s, to say nothing of the 1990s or 2000s until the Power & Light district went up. The main problem with downtown KC is that the growth pattern of the metro (with the big exception of the airport) moved dramatically to the south and southwest. These trends started in the 1920s. The development of the Plaza into an alternative urban business area (it was already a shopping area starting in the 1920s) kicked into high gear during the 1980s, and at the same time the College Boulevard/ Corporate Woods part of JoCo became the primary business area for the metro.

Yes, there is the border war, etc., but those are the facts on the ground, and I don't see them changing. Businesses will not voluntarily flock to downtown KCMO. It is way too far north for the current center of population and especially the concentration of GDP in the metro area. It does have good transit, and government plus the Kemper and Hall families have kept some vibrancy there.

Elsewhere on these boards I have pointed out that the KC downtown is roughly 20 miles from the main suburban business areas. This is much farther than most successful metros. In fact, it is reminiscent of San Francisco and San Jose -- and they function almost as non-dependent metros, each with greater population to boot.

It is possible that the KC metro will function as a bi-polar metro, where some activity happens in the downtown-Plaza corridor and some activity happens in the College Blvd corridor. But that is the best outcome. Downtown will not in the next 50 years re-emerge as the primary business district.

To get back OT, this is why I envisage -- as a possible not probable eventuality -- the use of New Century for some commercial flights, in the way that Ontario operates flights for the Inland Empire (who wants to drive all the way to LAX if you live in Riverside). If downtown KC is too far north, KCI is really too far north.
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Old 01-22-2014, 01:42 PM
 
Location: Washington, DC area
10,994 posts, read 20,623,638 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by westender View Post
Downtown KC became a ghost town back in the 1970s. There was little activity in the 1980s, to say nothing of the 1990s or 2000s until the Power & Light district went up. The main problem with downtown KC is that the growth pattern of the metro (with the big exception of the airport) moved dramatically to the south and southwest. These trends started in the 1920s. The development of the Plaza into an alternative urban business area (it was already a shopping area starting in the 1920s) kicked into high gear during the 1980s, and at the same time the College Boulevard/ Corporate Woods part of JoCo became the primary business area for the metro.

Yes, there is the border war, etc., but those are the facts on the ground, and I don't see them changing. Businesses will not voluntarily flock to downtown KCMO. It is way too far north for the current center of population and especially the concentration of GDP in the metro area. It does have good transit, and government plus the Kemper and Hall families have kept some vibrancy there.

Elsewhere on these boards I have pointed out that the KC downtown is roughly 20 miles from the main suburban business areas. This is much farther than most successful metros. In fact, it is reminiscent of San Francisco and San Jose -- and they function almost as non-dependent metros, each with greater population to boot.

It is possible that the KC metro will function as a bi-polar metro, where some activity happens in the downtown-Plaza corridor and some activity happens in the College Blvd corridor. But that is the best outcome. Downtown will not in the next 50 years re-emerge as the primary business district.

To get back OT, this is why I envisage -- as a possible not probable eventuality -- the use of New Century for some commercial flights, in the way that Ontario operates flights for the Inland Empire (who wants to drive all the way to LAX if you live in Riverside). If downtown KC is too far north, KCI is really too far north.
First off, I never said it would ever re-emerge as the primary business district of the metro. There will always be more job growth in the suburbs for the foreseeable future and that is a trend with nearly every American city. I have never questioned that trend. Although one must keep things in perspective. While areas like Southern JoCo now have more office space than Downtown KC, you are also comparing a geographic area probably 100 times the size of downtown. Downtown and especially the Downtown/Plaza corridor is still the highest concentration of jobs in the metro even if it's not the largest. But all this has little to do with my quoted post above. I was simply defending why KCMO subsidized the P&L district, so I'm honestly not sure what the point of your reply was.

I agree, downtown KC will continue to lose its percent of metrowide jobs. But, it doesn't have to be as bad as it's been. KC's downtown is doing much worse than most cities when it comes to maintaining urban core jobs while many cities have seen some modest return to the central city.

As far as suburban population skewing SW. I just don't agree that residential growth in JoCo has played a huge role. Most of JoCo is still only a 20-30 minute drive downtown and while the population of suburban JoCo is close to 600k, It's balanced out well with Northland (over 350k) and eastern Jax (over 400k). I Know most people in KC tend to ignore the economic and commuting numbers of the MO side suburbs, but all the business moving to JoCo have actually triggered much longer commutes for a large number of metro area residents. Company X moving from Downtown KC to JoCo might put itself much closer to 25-40% of its employees, but just made things worse for another 25-45% of its employees. The suburban population of metro KC is actually pretty evenly disbursed around downtown, except maybe west. Many cities are MUCH more lopsided than KC. St Louis for example.

And as far as the OP, I just don't see it. Unless KC reached a population of 4-5 million, there is not going to be a second commercial airport in metro KC. If you fly a lot, you might look someplace other than 167th and Roe, at least for the next 50-60 years
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Old 01-22-2014, 01:57 PM
 
Location: A safe distance from San Francisco
10,212 posts, read 7,048,513 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by westender View Post
Downtown KC became a ghost town back in the 1970s. There was little activity in the 1980s, to say nothing of the 1990s or 2000s until the Power & Light district went up. The main problem with downtown KC is that the growth pattern of the metro (with the big exception of the airport) moved dramatically to the south and southwest. These trends started in the 1920s. The development of the Plaza into an alternative urban business area (it was already a shopping area starting in the 1920s) kicked into high gear during the 1980s, and at the same time the College Boulevard/ Corporate Woods part of JoCo became the primary business area for the metro.

Yes, there is the border war, etc., but those are the facts on the ground, and I don't see them changing. Businesses will not voluntarily flock to downtown KCMO. It is way too far north for the current center of population and especially the concentration of GDP in the metro area. It does have good transit, and government plus the Kemper and Hall families have kept some vibrancy there.

Elsewhere on these boards I have pointed out that the KC downtown is roughly 20 miles from the main suburban business areas. This is much farther than most successful metros. In fact, it is reminiscent of San Francisco and San Jose -- and they function almost as non-dependent metros, each with greater population to boot.

It is possible that the KC metro will function as a bi-polar metro, where some activity happens in the downtown-Plaza corridor and some activity happens in the College Blvd corridor. But that is the best outcome. Downtown will not in the next 50 years re-emerge as the primary business district.

To get back OT, this is why I envisage -- as a possible not probable eventuality -- the use of New Century for some commercial flights, in the way that Ontario operates flights for the Inland Empire (who wants to drive all the way to LAX if you live in Riverside). If downtown KC is too far north, KCI is really too far north.
And why would it?

Ever?

It is fascinating to watch so much time and energy cast to the four winds by a zealous few trying to turn the clock back to 1910.

I agree with you about New Century. 30 years ago I worked a stone's throw from the south end of runway 36, but I probably wouldn't recognize the area today outside of a few key buildings. Anyway, it makes all the sense in the world as a southern alternative as the metro grows south - just as SNA did as the LA population center moved further from LAX.
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Old 01-22-2014, 02:08 PM
 
Location: Florida and New England
1,504 posts, read 1,611,804 times
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Originally Posted by kcmo View Post
First off, I never said it would ever re-emerge as the primary business district of the metro. There will always be more job growth in the suburbs for the foreseeable future and that is a trend with nearly every American city. I have never questioned that trend. Although one must keep things in perspective. While areas like Southern JoCo now have more office space than Downtown KC, you are also comparing a geographic area probably 100 times the size of downtown. Downtown and especially the Downtown/Plaza corridor is still the highest concentration of jobs in the metro even if it's not the largest. But all this has little to do with my quoted post above. I was simply defending why KCMO subsidized the P&L district, so I'm honestly not sure what the point of your reply was.

I agree, downtown KC will continue to lose its percent of metrowide jobs. But, it doesn't have to be as bad as it's been. KC's downtown is doing much worse than most cities when it comes to maintaining urban core jobs while many cities have seen some modest return to the central city.

As far as suburban population skewing SW. I just don't agree that residential growth in JoCo has played a huge role. Most of JoCo is still only a 20-30 minute drive downtown and while the population of suburban JoCo is close to 600k, It's balanced out well with Northland (over 350k) and eastern Jax (over 400k). I Know most people in KC tend to ignore the economic and commuting numbers of the MO side suburbs, but all the business moving to JoCo have actually triggered much longer commutes for a large number of metro area residents. Company X moving from Downtown KC to JoCo might put itself much closer to 25-40% of its employees, but just made things worse for another 25-45% of its employees. The suburban population of metro KC is actually pretty evenly disbursed around downtown, except maybe west. Many cities are MUCH more lopsided than KC. St Louis for example.

And as far as the OP, I just don't see it. Unless KC reached a population of 4-5 million, there is not going to be a second commercial airport in metro KC. If you fly a lot, you might look someplace other than 167th and Roe, at least for the next 50-60 years
I don't disagree. Sorry if the tone came off as argumentative.

It's a distant possibility regarding commercial air traffic at New Century, and if it does happen it won't be next year or even this decade.

My feeling about downtown KC is that the southward population trends (both southwesterly toward Olathe and also southeasterly toward Lee's Summit) have made the 435 corridor more viable than downtown. It's too bad, and I don't really think it can be changed except over many decades. I just drove around Beacon Hill today (due east of Hallmark) and there are vast, nearly empty areas within 2 miles of 12th and Main. It's really astonishing. One or two houses per block.

I look at Chicago or Atlanta or Boston and see much more viable downtown areas. All of which also have sprawl and suburban office parks (all metros also notably larger). Downtown KC does not seem able to climb into that tier of cities, and I think part of the cause is that the growth is too far to the south. Mayor Wheeler indicated that part of the reasoning for KCI's location (although planned before him) was to counterbalance the southward sprawl, even though Northland sprawl ensued. Plus TWA had its maintenance base there.

St. Louis is an interesting test case -- there the growth is all about West County, which has a more disjointed suburban feel as well. St. Louis downtown may be an even worse basket case.
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Old 01-22-2014, 04:31 PM
 
2,202 posts, read 2,538,413 times
Reputation: 1968
Lots of assuming here that the trends of the last 50 years will be the trends of the next 50. people were making that same mistake back then too.

The idea that the march to the exurbs or in KCs case, that the population shift generally SW (though that's certainly less pronounced than most JoCo crowers realize) is somehow inexorable, or almost predetermined is a particularly shortsighted and unimaginative one.
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