KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -- Plans to extend the Kansas City Streetcar are coming to life.
In addition to making the existing route stretch all the way south through the plaza to UMKC, there are also talks of moving it north to the Riverfront.
Right now, the proposal is in the planning and design phase.
Officials want to extend this existing downtown route all the north to the Berkely Riverfront.
The KC Streetcar authority says they’re hoping to pay for it with revenue from Newport development.
They’re also looking into federal funding.
Right now, there are only two businesses near the Berkely Riverfront and they support the development.
“Having the street car in Kansas City is just a wonderful asset to our city and it shows the growth we’ve experienced in recent years,” said Kourtney Cowell District manager for Flaherty & Collins Properties. “I think everyone is really excited about it, and personally I don’t see anything negative to come from it.”
There is a public meeting Thursday afternoon from 4:30 to 6:30 at the Union Apartments by the riverfront to talk about the project.
People who stopped by the Union Berkley Riverfront Apartments on Thursday were able to see renderings that helped them visualize where the streetcar would go in that area.
People living there and people on the streetcar shared their thoughts.
Every 10 minutes or so, the streetcar rolls into Union Station.
Some point like the convenience, and that’s the thought behind expanding the tracks down to the Missouri Riverfront.
“My wife and I have actually talked about it a lot, just talked about how excited we would be if the streetcar does come down here, just to make getting back and forth to town just a little bit easier,” said Adam Magers who lives at the apartment complex by the river.
Right now, to get to the River Market or downtown, it’s a hike for him.
“Having the streetcar would make it nice and easy,” Magers said.
Chris Springer said the streetcar would help him and his dog, Cole, explore the area more.
“I think it would bring some more stuff in here,” he said.
That’s the plan: Build up the riverfront and make it more accessible.
“We also want to make that amenity itself more attractive to developers, to new residents, to new employers,” said Tom Gerend, Executive Director of the KC Streetcar Authority.
They are still working on a financial plan for the $30 million project.
As for the larger extension south, to the Plaza, that project is moving forward as well but could be slowed as they are waiting on their application for federal funding to be reviewed.
“We’re optimistic and hopeful we can get our federal partners back to work so they can help us make that project real and happen,” Gerend said.
Since the riverfront project is so much smaller than the extension down Main Street south to UMKC and the Plaza, it will be easier to build.
Both projects will get started as quickly as possible. Right now, there is no exact timeline of when they will be done.
There will be a meeting about the southern extension to UMKC in February.