KANSAS CITY, Mo. — We’ve all had Monday mornings where nothing seems to go right.
It was one of those mornings for Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas who was stuck in a City Hall elevator until he was freed by firefighters.
Now he’s using the experience to talk about long-deferred maintenance at the building.
Lucas said he’s never been stuck in an elevator before.
“I have heard about other people who have been stuck. I’ve always been like ‘Thank God, I would not like that experience,'” Lucas said.
But there’s a first time for everything. Lucas used elevator ‘D’ Monday morning; two other elevators experienced the same issues.
“There was not a ton of sound. There was just a legit stop. So imagine hitting your brakes very quickly. In fact, it was really just that. It was brakes and like, ‘Wait a minute,'” Lucas said.
He later posed for a photo with his rescuers who got the doors open closer to the second floor.
Now Lucas is reflecting on the situation, thinking about the politics of the situation.
“One of the things we’ve voted on last week were bonds to improve public spaces and parks. City Hall is not part of that bond so that money would not go to it, but in this building alone — it is a beautiful building. It’s stood tall over the city since the mid-1930s,” Lucas said.
“That being said, it has about $90 million of deferred maintenance as of 2018, which means with inflation and all that it could run $110-120 million,” Lucas said.
“Today it might have been the mayor. The next day it could be your friend, your neighbor, your relative who’s coming into this building to file a planning permit or something. And so, for us, making sure that people are safe is key,” Lucas said.
Lucas pitched an idea of using an asset management program that could address future investment in public buildings. The city already has a similar asset management program for roads.
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