Introduction When it comes to civic improvement, Kansas City has a track record of not sitting still. Diligent development and restoration have resulted in multiple architecturally spectacular entertainment complexes.
flickr/Daniel X ONeil
Country Club Plaza, the nation's first shopping center, is a delightful surprise. Its charming European-style courtyards and buildings stretch 14 blocks, with horse-drawn carriages and gondolas moving among the stores, local restaurants and clubs. Union Station's renovation turned the 1914 landmark, the country's second-largest train station, into a destination in itself with the addition of restaurants, theaters and a science museum. And Crown Center, an 85-acre mixed-use complex built around Hallmark Cards' world headquarters, has given new life to what was once an area of vacant lots and abandoned warehouses.
But the city wasn’t finished. Eight square blocks of dining and entertainment venues offering all sorts of fun things to do is mixed in with residential lofts and H&R Block's international headquarters in an area called the Power & Light District. On the eastern edge of the district stands the Sprint Center, a 18,500-seat arena that hosts concerts, shows and sporting events.
By CarFrom the north, Kansas City is approached by two major controlled-access highways, I-35 and I-29, which merge into I-29/35, or US 71, and cross the Missouri River before leading into the downtown area via 13th Street. Running into Kansas City, Kan., from the south, I-35 provides direct controlled access to downtown via Washington Avenue and 12th Street.
On the Missouri side the fastest southern approach is via US 71, which connects with the I-435 bypass. The bypass circles the city and can be taken north to I-70. Beginning in St. Louis, I-70 bisects the state and enters Kansas City via the 13th Street exit. I-70 also is the controlled-access route from the west to downtown.
Street SystemThe Greater Kansas City area follows a basic grid pattern, slightly complicated by the Kansas and Missouri rivers. North Kansas City and Kansas City, Mo., are separated by the Missouri River, from which cross streets are numbered in ascending order well into the suburbs. The reference point for the east-west block designation in downtown Kansas City, Mo., is Main Street. Conversely, numbered streets in Kansas City, Kan., run on a north-south axis, paralleling the abrupt S-curve of the Missouri River.
State Line Road separates the Missouri and Kansas sides of the city. The street systems of both are peculiar to their own states, although several streets continue across the border unchanged. The main east-west artery over the Kansas River connecting the twin cities is I-70, which leads into US 24/40, the main route through downtown Kansas City, Kan.
I-70 also intersects other major thoroughfares that travel through and around town. The Southwest Trafficway provides rapid access into the central part of Kansas City, Mo.
Generally downtown speed limits are 25 mph or as posted. Right turns on red are permitted unless otherwise posted. Avoid rush hours, from about 6:30 to 8:30 a.m. and 3:30 to 6 p.m.
ParkingOn-street parking is controlled by meters, but finding an empty space in the right spot can be difficult. Numerous commercial lots and garages are concentrated around Central and Grand avenues, between 9th and 14th streets, and at the southern edge of town. Rates average $1 per half-hour, with a maximum of $7.
Parking also is available for $10-$20 around the Truman Sports Complex, home to Arrowhead and Kauffman stadiums. Several major downtown hotels are connected to the Kansas City Convention Center by an underground concourse.
Kansas City, KS
AAA’s in-person hotel evaluations are unscheduled to ensure the inspector has an experience similar to that of members. To pass inspection, all hotels must meet the same rigorous standards for cleanliness, comfort and hospitality. These hotels receive a AAA Diamond designation that tells members what type of experience to expect.
The sales tax rate in the city of Kansas City is 7.99 percent. The city's lodging tax is 11.98 percent and there is a rental car tax of $4 per day.
Research Medical Center, (816) 276-4000; St. Joseph Medical Center, (816) 942-4400; Saint Luke's Hospital, (816) 932-2000; Saint Luke's North Hospital, (816) 891-6000; Truman Medical Center Hospital Hill, (816) 404-1000.
1321 Baltimore Ave. Kansas City, MO 64105. Phone:(816)221-5242 or (800)767-7700
Kansas City International Airport
Hertz, at the airport, offers discounts to AAA members; phone (816) 243-5765 or (800) 654-3080.
The Amtrak station, (816) 421-3622 or (800) 872-7245, is at W. Pershing Road and Main Street.
Greyhound Lines Inc., (800) 231-2222, is at 1101 Troost Ave. Jefferson Lines also serves Kansas City.
Yellow Cab, (816) 471-5000, is the city's major taxi service. Cabs are deregulated, so fares vary widely. Rates are posted on each cab, and you are not required to take the first cab in a line. Up to five people can share a ride for a single fare.
Ride KC, the metro bus system, serves all of Greater Kansas City except Johnson County. The exact-change fare minimum is $1.50 ($3 for an all-day pass) and varies by distance. For more details and for route information regarding construction, phone (816) 221-0660.