Kaw Point Connector

From the earliest days of Trail planning, ways to provide safe pedestrian access to Kaw Point Park from the Riverfront Heritage Trail have been studied. At the point where the Riverfront Heritage Trail crosses the Kansas River, it comes as close as four city blocks to Kaw Point Park. Lewis & Clark Kaw Point Park is one of the most historical parks in the region. The National Park Service has recognized Kaw Point Park as a Certified Site for the Lewis & Clark Historic Trail. Moreover, the park offers a spectacular vista of the Kansas and Missouri Rivers. This park also has boat ramps and walking paths that make the rivers fully accessible. The park is the “front yard” for the Strawberry Hill and downtown redevelopment in Kansas City, Kansas

The distance between the Trail and the park may be short, but it has many challenges. Within that few blocks are several very busy railroad lines not to mention overhead traffic ways. Where access is available the route comes perilously close to the flood plane. Initial feasibility studies of a reasonable route were encouraging and the Unified Government became committed to riverfront development and ensuring pedestrian and bike access to Kaw Point Park. Recently, the Unified Government in cooperation with Friends of Kaw Point, Inc and Kansas City River Trails, Inc. accepted an open walkway/ramp structure comprised of ADA standard switch backs and a trial segment that connects to Kaw point Park after completing a rail underpass. These plans were recommended by TranSystems, Inc. and endorsed by the Unified Government, Corps of Engineers, Kaw Valley Drainage District and the railroads with no major objection. With these findings in hand the Unified Government submitted a request for CMAQ funding. This funding request was approved for construction of this connector in 2007.

Costs of Construction: $804,000

Funding Information:

  • CMAQ Funding Request for Fiscal Year 2007 amounting to $643,200 (CMAQ) funding is an 80% Grant, the rest is made up of 20% cash funds (including in-kind contributions)
  • Matching funds include grants of $30,000 from Friends of Kaw Point Park, $65,000 from Kansas City River Trails, and
    $15,100 of Work -in-kind from the Unified Government.

Gap Funding needed to complete construction:$35,700