KC Streetcar Authority endorses route expansion

The Kansas City Streetcar Authority on Wednesday endorsed a proposed route extension north to Berkley Riverfront Park along the Grand Street Viaduct.

A feasibility study found the extension, which is estimated to cost $30 million, was the most practical and affordable route.

“This is a really unique opportunity,” Streetcar Authority executive director Tom Gerend told the board, adding that an extension would knit the riverfront to the streetcar’s current end point in River Market. “The ability to bridge that divide…is potentially a powerful connection.”

The riverfront is seen as a potential extension point because development is finally starting to occur there. Port KC has broken ground on a $72-million, 400-unit apartment and retail project on the riverfront. Additional development is anticipated.

Gerend said the next step calls for refining the cost and coming up with a financing strategy, which could include seeking federal funds and private development financing. It’s not anticipated that this extension would require a public tax increase or a public vote. The financing strategy could become clearer by late this year, Gerend said.

Read more: Kansas City Star


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