KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Is it a solution Midtown parking problems or a giant eyesore? It depends on who you ask. Plans for a new parking garage at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City could change the Kansas City skyline.
The view is the reason Gary Hines says bought his loft at the Park Reserve Condos.
“It’s a beautiful view. It’s just spectacular. It’s very relaxing. It’s different. When you have the thunderstorms and lightning, it’s amazing to watch,” he explained.
While Hines appreciates watching the weather, he says there’s something gloomy looming in the forecast.
“It just seems like we were kind of snowballed. You know? They just sent this stuff out and said this is what we’re going to do and they really didn’t give us a chance to voice any opinion on it,” Hines said.
He’s talking about the Federal Reserve Bank’s plan to build a new three-story parking garage.
“It’s not going to be the same. We’re going to see cars and we’re going to see the lighting of that,” Hines said.
Bill Medley, the Public Information Director with the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City said, “This was the best-case scenario and we really think it’s going to be a big improvement for the neighborhood.”
He said there are 150 employees who don’t have a place to park. They wind up on streets lining nearby parks and the Liberty Memorial.
“This parking garage is really going to help address some of those issues,” Medley said.
Hines wanted to know why the FRB didn’t consider other alternatives, like building the three-story garage underground. When FOX 4 asked if that was considered, Medley said, “It’s not possible to do this at this time. It’s just not a part of the plan.”
“It ruins the view. I want to be able to sit out there and have a nice relaxing time instead of looking at a parking garage,” Hines said.
He also said he isn’t mad at the bank.
“They’re good neighbors. I mean there haven’t been any issues with them or anything,” Hines said.
The bank said it wants to stay transparent. “We’re here to listen to the neighbors, take their issues into consideration,” Medley said.
The bank told FOX 4 the Planning and Zoning Committee will look at this next week and it’s set to go before the full council in June. If it passes, construction should start in July and wrap up by next spring.
FOX 4 reached out to Kansas City to learn more about its position on the garage. A city spokesperson with the Parks and Recreation Department sent this information:
“The FRB presented their plans and received support from the Penn Valley Park Conservancy which is a KC Parks Partner/Advocacy Group. As such it is appropriate for them to comment."
Here is its statement:
“The Federal Reserve Bank presented their parking garage expansion plans to the Penn Valley Park Conservancy. We liked the proposal and support it as a way to meet the demands of their growing employee population.”
David Disney, President
Penn Valley Park Conservancy"