KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Two years after record flooding put lives in danger, the city Monday started tearing down three buildings that used to house businesses along Indian Creek.
The work may help control future flooding and attract more visitors to the area.
Three buildings are being demolished along 103rd Street from Wornall Road to the west. They include the former site of the popular Coach’s Bar and Grill.
All of the asphalt and paved surfaces will be removed as part of the project, which costs $174,000 and is being paid for with GO bonds approved by voters for flood control.
In its place, the city will create green space to integrate into the Indian Creek Trail. The land eventually may become a trail head to draw in recreational users to the area.
“I think we’ve got to be thinking about development in the future in terms of how that impacts our floodways,” said Mayor Pro Tem Kevin McManus, who represents the area on the city council. “Part of that includes whether we are encouraging folks to use pervious surfaces or other mechanisms to make sure as much water as possible that flows into their property is not immediately directed into the stream.”
The city says the land will be a porous surface to absorb rainwater and runoff and help prevent other businesses nearby from being threatened by floodwaters.
Many of the shops that used to be on the flooded site have relocated nearby.
Development throughout south Kansas City and Johnson County, Kansas, has increased the amount of runoff into Indian Creek.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is involved in studying long-term solutions for the watershed that may take a decade to become reality.