KANSAS CITY, Mo. — With construction on the southern extension starting soon, the Kansas City Streetcar Authority is ready to explore taking the rail to the north.

The KC Streetcar Authority, along with North Kansas City, the Kansas City Area Transportation Authority, the Missouri Department of Transportation and Kansas City, Missouri, are conducting a comprehensive study to connect the existing streetcar into North Kansas City.

The study will look at extending the existing study from the River Market across the Missouri River to approximately 32nd Avenue in North Kansas City.

The NorthRail Streetcar Study will include the following work:

  • Investigation of a preferred river crossing, alignment, and stop locations with a focus on the Heart of America Bridge.
  • Financial analysis including capital and operating costs, funding sources, and possible federal grant opportunities.
  • Community engagement and public involvement.

They estimate the study, which consultant team Kimley-Horn will lead, will be complete by the end of 2022 and will cost $180,000.

“We are excited to continue the investigation of a potential streetcar extension north better to connect a rapidly growing North Kansas City and Northland,” said Tom Gerend, executive director of the KCSA. “These projects take years to prepare, and now is the time to clarify our vision and work to push it forward.”

The current streetcar already runs from the River Market to Union Station.

And of course, drivers in Kansas City’s Midtown likely have seen the preliminary work for the Main Street extension, which will take the streetcar to the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

Crews have been updating the city’s water and sewer system along the new route. Streetcar construction on the Main Street extension is slated to start in early 2022.

The KC Streetcar Authority is also planning to extend about a half-mile from the River Market to Berkley Riverfront and has already secured some federal funding.

The agency is also exploring the possibility of a major east-west extensions in the heart of the Kansas City.

Discussions on where the east-west expansion would go are just starting, but this study team will look at a possible extension along 39th Street toward the University of Kansas Health System in Kansas City, Kansas, and another along Linwood Boulevard into east Kansas City.

KCATA President and CEO Robbie Makinen also previously hinted in a statement that they could look at connecting more public transit to the Truman Sports Complex. The east-west extension study is also slated to begin in 2022.