Kansas City spending millions to upgrade parks and neighborhoods


KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Crews broke ground on the first of several projects to upgrade parks across the city.

Independence Plaza Park in the city’s Historic Northeast neighborhood is the first to undergo a facelift. The plan is to build a new accessible playground for children to enjoy.

A futsal court, walking trail and gathering space for the community will also be worked into the overhaul. New fencing, lighting and signage will also be installed.

The city received a $30 million grant from the Department of Housing and Urban Development to pay for the upgrades. It will focus on parks in and around Chouteau Courts public housing, Pendleton Heights, and portions of the Paseo West and Independence Plaza neighborhoods.

“The improvements at Independence Plaza Park are an example of how improving housing isn’t just about the buildings we live in, but it is also about improving the amenities around it so that a neighborhood and its residents can thrive,” said Scott Wagner, Board of Parks and Recreation commissioner.

Other improvements are also planned in the area. Those projects include include storefront upgrades, a Samuel Rodgers Healthy Living Campus, and infrastructure improvements along East 8th Street and Woodland Avenue.

The entire overhaul is expected to take about 5 years to complete.

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