KC Streetcar to expand further south

A new taxing method to fund a southern streetcar expansion was recently proposed legal, and the Streetcar Authority has ordered new cars to assist with the influx of riders.


A streetcar to be delivered to Kansas City is offloaded from its trailer Feb. 3 in Kansas City, Mo. The city is on schedule to begin service in April. photo courtesy of Tribune News Service

by Lily Manning, News Editor

Since opening last May, the Kansas City streetcar has received rider traffic above and beyond the anticipated rate, urging the Streetcar Authority to place an order for additional cars, expected to arrive in 2019. The Streetcar Authority has also proposed an expansion further south, and a new tax method was proposed legal Sept. 28 to fund the expansion.

A report from the Kansas City Streetcar Authority explained that the expansion will extend the car’s route almost 4 miles south to 51st and Brookside Boulevard, near UMKC’s campus, and less than ten blocks from STA’s campus. The estimated cost for the expansion is $227 billion. Half of this funding is expected to come from the federal government while the other half will be funded by a 1-cent sales tax and a special property tax for property-owners in a ⅓ mile radius around the expansion.

Besides expanding further south, the streetcar will also be adding several new streetcars. This addition comes after the KC Streetcar Authority recorded an average daily ridership of 6,600 passengers.

Each streetcar that will be added to the current fleet is expected to cost somewhere in between $3.5 to $5 million. This addition will be funded by a budget surplus from original fundraising when the streetcar first came to Kansas City.