Kansas City satellite map. The larger Missouri River is zigzagging from west to east; the much smaller Kansas is approaching from the southwest and joins it at Kaw Point in Kansas City, Kansas. Downtown Kansas City, Missouri, is immediately southeast of their intersection and North Kansas City, Missouri, is to its northeast.
The larger Kansas City Metropolitan Area as seen on a map can be visualized roughly as four quadrants:
The center of Kansas City is roughly contained inside the downtown loop (shaded in red).
Downtown Kansas City is a section of western Kansas City, Missouri, where 40% of the area's employees work, and where much of the city's entertainment facilities are located. The area has been undergoing a massive revitalization since 2000, and increased its population by over 7,000 people between 2000 and 2005. The Power and Light District, Historic Garment District, and the T-Mobile Center are in the downtown area.
The Northland is a section of the metropolitan area north of the Missouri River, comprising Clay and Platte Counties in Missouri. This area includes the northern half of Kansas City, Missouri, which is referred to as "Kansas City, North" to distinguish it from the rest of the Northland and the city of North Kansas City. The area is also referred to as "North of the River" by local residents and by local television stations in news and traffic reports.
River Market is an area north of downtown, south of the Missouri River and west of Highway 9, and is home to a large farmer's market.
"North Kansas City" (abbreviated as NKC, and also known as Northtown) is a separate city that is completely surrounded by Kansas City, Missouri.
The Country Club District is an associated group of neighborhoods built along Ward Parkway by J.C. Nichols, which is just south of the Country Club Plaza and includes Sunset Hill, Brookside, Crestwood, and Mission Hills, Kansas.
39th Street (also referred to as the Volker neighborhood or "Restaurant Row") is a small section of West 39th Street between State Line Road and the Southwest Trafficway in Kansas City, Missouri. The area has many restaurants, bars and shops, and is just across the state line from the University of Kansas Medical Center.
Benton Curve is a curve at the cross-section of Interstate 70 and Benton Boulevard in Kansas City, Missouri; the area has long been prone to traffic accidents.
Pendleton Heights is a historic neighborhood in the northeast side of Kansas City, Missouri, which is bordered by Cliff Drive to the north, Chestnut Trafficway to the east, Independence Avenue to the south and the Paseo Trafficway to the west. It is Kansas City's oldest surviving neighborhood, and is home to the city's largest concentration of Victorian homes.
The Grandview Triangle is the intersection of four major highways: Interstate 435, Interstate 470, Interstate 49 and U.S. Route 71 (Bruce R. Watkins Drive). Notorious for fatal accidents, the Triangle has undergone improvements and upgrades in recent years.
135th Street (Overland Park, Kansas) - Shopping area featuring several indoor and outlet malls, restaurants, and two movie theaters.
Prariefire - Modern shopping and leisure area featuring fine restaurants such as Cocobolos and The Brass Onion, and high-end bowling venue Pinstripes. The Museum of Prariefire is the area's main attraction.
Strawberry Hill is a historical area in Kansas City, Kansas that was home to many eastern European immigrants. Later, the neighborhood became home to many Latino/Chicano families. However, in recent years, Strawberry Hill has seen residents immigrating to the area from Eastern Europe.
Hospital Hill is an area near 23rd Street and Holmes Avenue in Kansas City, Missouri, and consists of two major hospitals (Truman Medical Center and the Children's Mercy Hospital) and the University of Missouri-Kansas City's School of Medicine, School of Dentistry, School of Pharmacy and School of Nursing.
Argentine is a neighborhood in Kansas City, Kansas, centered along Metropolitan and Strong avenues from 27th to 30th streets. It is one of the oldest Mexican/Latino neighborhoods in Kansas City, with Mexican immigration to that area starting in the 1800s.
The Crossroads Arts District is a neighborhood in the downtown area between the Central Business District and Union Station, centered around the intersection of 19th Street and Baltimore Avenue in Kansas City, Missouri. It contains dozens of art galleries, and is considered to be the center of the arts culture in the metropolitan area. Local artists sponsor exhibits in the district on the first Friday of each month.
Quality Hill is a residential and commercial neighborhood atop the bluff on the west side of the Central Business District of Downtown Kansas City, across the river from the Charles B. Wheeler Airport.
Washington-Wheatley is a historically Black neighborhood southeast of the 18th and Vine Historical District.
The Westside is a historically African American and Chicano/Latino neighborhood near Southwest Boulevard and Interstate 35.
Westport is a historic district that includes the oldest building still standing in the city and that is home to much of the metropolitan area's entertainment and nightlife.
Valentine is a neighborhood north of Westport that includes the historic Uptown Theater.
West Bottoms is home to many of downtown's oldest buildings and the former location of the city's stockyards. It is now known for its arts community, the American Royal, Hy-Vee Arena, antique stores, and First Fridays events.
Rosedale is the southernmost district of Kansas City, Kansas, and the only part of that city whose streets are on the metropolitan grid. Home to the main hospital of the University of Kansas Health System, it was the last municipality absorbed by Kansas City, Kansas, prior to the creation of the Unified Government of Kansas City and Wyandotte County.
Armourdale is a residential and commercial neighborhood in Kansas City, Kansas, and is one of the historically Chicano(a) neighborhoods of the Kansas City metropolitan area.
Sheffield is an industrial district in the Blue River valley on the city's far northeast side.
East Bottoms Also known as the Industrial District, it is primarily known for its industrial businesses and railroad activity. There are however burgeoning cultural attractions at the intersection of Montgall and Guinotte Avenues related to handmade goods, food, music and a distillery.
Hanover Heights is a small neighborhood in Kansas City, Kansas' Rosedale section that was once primarily noted for the antiques shops along 45th Avenue, with the neighborhood's boundaries running mainly between Rainbow Boulevard and State Line Road, running south of the KU Medical Center to the Johnson County border.
The Historic Northeast District (or simply Northeast) is a working-class immigrant collection of neighborhoods between downtown Kansas City and the suburb of Independence.
"Downtown" usually refers to downtown Kansas City, Missouri which has a population of 25,204. Downtown is Kansas City's historic center, located entirely within Kansas City, Missouri, and contains the city's original town site, business districts, and residential neighborhoods. Downtown is bounded by the Missouri River on the north, the Missouri-Kansas state line on the west, 31st Street on the south and Woodland Avenue on the east. The downtown area includes the Central Business District and its buildings, which form the city's skyline. The Downtown Loop is formed by Interstates 670, 70, and 35. Within the downtown loop are many of the tall buildings and skyscrapers that make up the city's skyline. The downtown loop also has small, distinct neighborhoods such as Quality Hill, the Garment District, the Financial District, the Convention Center District, and the Power and Light District.
Midtown/Plaza is entirely within Kansas City, Missouri with a population of 40,355. It is just south of downtown, and bounded by 31st Street on the north, the state line on the west, West Gregory Boulevard (71st Street) on the south, and Troost Avenue on the east. Midtown/Plaza, the core of the metropolitan area, has many cultural attractions, shopping and entertainment areas, large hospitals, universities, and the metro area's most densely populated neighborhoods.
As of 2019[update], Missouri accounted for 56% of employment and Kansas accounted for 44% of employment. From 2018 to 2019 Kansas added 13,000 jobs and Missouri added 6,500 jobs. Kansas side employment grew by 2.7% and Missouri side employment grew by 1.1%; job growth in Kansas was more than double that in Missouri. Professional and business employment growth was due entirely to a gain of 5,200 jobs in the Kansas portion of the metro area.
In 2015 the metropolitan area accounted for 40.9% of the total GDP in the state of Kansas and 22.7% of the total GDP in the state of Missouri.
The Kansas City metropolitan area has more freeway lane miles per capita than any other large metropolitan area in the United States (over 27% more than the second-place Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex), over 50% more than the average American metro area, and nearly 75% more than the large metro area with the least: Las Vegas.
Other interstates that cross through the area include:
I-435 – A bi-state loop through Jackson, Clay and Platte counties in Missouri and through Johnson and Wyandotte counties in Kansas. It is the second-longest single-numbered beltway in the U.S., and the fourth-longest in the world.
I-470 – Connects South Kansas City with Lee's Summit and Independence.
I-670 – A southern bypass of I-70 and the southern portion of the downtown loop. The roadway is designated on road signs as East I-70, when exiting from I-35 while traveling north.
U.S. Highways serving the Kansas City Metro Area include these:
US 24 – Running from Independence Ave. and Winner Rd., between downtown Kansas City and Independence, Missouri, it serves as a street-level connection to Independence.
US 40 – U.S. 40 is one of six east-west U.S.-numbered routes that run (or ran) from coast to coast. It serves as a business loop and an alternate route for I-70.
US 50 – Enters the area in southern Johnson County, follows I-435 from the west to I-470, then splits off of I-470 in Lee's Summit to continue eastward to Jefferson City and St. Louis as a regular highway. Its former route through Raytown and southeast Kansas City was renumbered as Route 350. U.S. 50 is also one of the six east-west highways that run coast-to-coast through the United States.
US-56 - Enters the area concurrent with I-35 until the Shawnee Mission Parkway exit. It runs east along the Parkway into the Plaza area of Kansas City before terminating at US-71.
K-5 – A minor freeway bypassing the north of Kansas City, Kansas, connecting the GM Fairfax plant with I-635. K-5 continues as Leavenworth Road west to I-435 then on to Leavenworth, Kansas.
K-7 – A freeway linking Leavenworth, Wyandotte and Johnson Counties in Kansas.
K-10 – A freeway linking I-435 to De Soto and Lawrence.
K-32 – A highway that links Lawrence to Wyandotte County in Kansas.
Missouri state highways
Missouri highways in the area include these:
Route 7 - An important state highway serving the eastern suburbs of the metro. Primarily running north and south through Jackson and Cass Counties. Connecting the following communities: Independence, Blue Springs, Lake Lotawana, Pleasant Hill and Harrisonville. It is the commercial backbone for Blue Springs, Lake Lotawana and Pleasant Hill.
Route 9 – A minor freeway northwest of North Kansas City, and serves as a commercial backbone to North Kansas City, Riverside, Platte Woods and Parkville.
Route 45 – Known as Tom Watson Parkway in the Kansas City vicinity until it intersects with I-435, it is a highway that spans 42 miles from I-29/US-71 to US-59/MO-273 in Lewis & Clark Village, Missouri. It's eastern segment is also known as NW 64th Street. The highway serves as a commercial backbone of Parkville, Missouri and runs across Riss Lake. The National Golf Club of Kansas City is located on MO-45.
Route 152 – A freeway contained entirely in Kansas City's Northland, stretching from Liberty in Clay County west until it intersects with I-435 near Parkville, Missouri.
Route 210 – A minor freeway east of North Kansas City that, as a two-lane road, stretches to Richmond, Missouri.
Route 291 – Formerly an eastern bypass route of U.S. 71, this minor freeway connects Harrisonville and Lee's Summit to Independence, Sugar Creek, Liberty and Kansas City North. The roadway is designated on road signs alongside I-470 north of Lee's Summit.
Ward Parkway – A scenic parkway in Kansas City, Missouri, near the Kansas-Missouri state line, where many large historic mansions and fountains are located.
Broadway – A street that runs from the west side of downtown Kansas City to Westport. The street has long been an entertainment center, with various bars, live jazz outlets, and restaurants along it. It also forms the eastern border of Quality Hill, one of the oldest neighborhoods in Kansas City.
The Paseo – Part of the city's original system of parks and boulevards developed beginning in the late 1880s, it is the longest of the original boulevards, and the only one that runs the entire length of the pre-World War II city boundary, from the Missouri River bluffs in the north to 79th Street on the south.
Shawnee Mission Parkway – Former alignment of K-10 from 1929 to 1983; K-58 from 1956 to 1979; US-56 from 1957 to 1968; K-12 from 1983 to 1998. Serves Shawnee Mission.
Troost Avenue – A north-south thoroughfare 11 blocks east of Main Street, named for an early Kansas City settler and dentist, Benoist Troost. The street roughly divides the city's mostly black neighborhoods to its east from its mostly white ones to its west.
Swope Parkway – Running on the south side of the Brush Creek valley eastward from The Paseo, then southward from its junction with Benton Boulevard, this street is the main route from the city's midtown to its largest city park, Swope Park.
North Oak Trafficway – A major road in the Northland. The roadway is designated as MO-283 from MO-9 to I-29. It is a major road in the Northland and serves as the commercial backbone of Gladstone, Missouri.
Barry Road – Runs along the former route of Military Road, which ran from Liberty to Fort Leavenworth. It is now a major commercial street in the Northland, although it has been paralleled by MO-152 for its entire route and has been effectively replaced by it east of Indiana Avenue.
87th Street Parkway – A major parkway that extends from Overland Park to De Soto. Former alignment of K-10 from 1929 to 1983.
The Missouri side of the metropolitan area south of the Missouri River shares a grid system with Johnson County on the Kansas side. Most east-west streets are numbered and most north-south streets named. Addresses on east-west streets are numbered from Main Street in Kansas City, Missouri, and on north-south streets from St. John Avenue (or the Missouri River, in the River Market area). The direction 'South' in street and address numbers is generally implied if 'North' is not specified, except for numbered 'avenues' in North Kansas City. In the northland, east-west streets use the prefix N.E. or N.W., depending on the side of N. Main on which they lie.
The Kansas City metropolitan area is served by several airports. It is primarily served by Kansas City International Airport, 15 miles northwest of downtown Kansas City, Missouri, was built to serve as a world hub for the supersonic transport and Boeing 747. The airport's gates were positioned 100 feet (30 m) from the street; however, since the September 11, 2001 attacks, these have undergone expensive overhauls, retrofitting it to incorporate elements of conventional security systems.
The much smaller Charles B. Wheeler Downtown Airport, to the immediate north of downtown near the Missouri River, was the original headquarters of Trans World Airlines (TWA) and houses the Airline History Museum. It served as the area's major airport until 1972, when Kansas City International (then known as Mid-Continent International Airport and was home to an Overhaul Base for TWA) became the primary airport for the metropolitan area after undergoing $150 million in upgrades that were approved by voters in a 1966 bond issue. Downtown Airport is still used to this day for general aviation and airshows.
There are two general aviation airports in Johnson County, Kansas. New Century AirCenter borders southwest Olathe and northeast Gardner. The primary runway at New Century AirCenter is the second longest runway in the region next to those at Kansas City International Airport. It is 7 miles from the Logistics Park Kansas City Intermodal Facility. The other airport, Johnson County Executive Airport has one runway on 500 acres and is the fourth busiest towered airport in the state of Kansas.
The KC Streetcar is a 2.2-mile modern streetcar line in Downtown Kansas City. Opened to the public in May 2016, it is maintained and operated by the Kansas City Streetcar Authority, a non-profit corporation made up of private sector stakeholders and city appointees. A ballot initiative to fund construction of the $102 million line was approved by voters on December 12, 2012. The system runs between River Market and Union Station, mostly along Main Street, with extensions north and south under consideration.
The KCTV-Tower is a 1,042 feet (318 m) pyramid-shaped television and radio tower used primarily by local CBS affiliate KCTV (channel 5). It is at the corner of 31st and Main Streets, next to the studio facilities of PBS member station KCPT (which formerly housed the original studios of KCTV), and is visible from many parts of the city, especially at night due to the string of lights adorning the tower.
Kansas City Community Christian Church, at 4601 Main Street, has a group of lights that shoot a beam upwards to the sky at night. Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright in the 1950s, it is slightly south of and across the street from the American Century Investment Towers (the Nelson Atkins is to the east, and the Kemper Museum is to the north and slightly east).
Bartle Hall has a section that somewhat resembles a north-south suspension bridge, crossing over I-670 at the southwest corner of the downtown loop. It has four towers, with metal sculptures on top of each tower.
The Veterans Affairs Medical Center, near the intersection of I-70, Linwood Boulevard and Van Brunt Boulevard, has a large "VA" emblem.
The Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts, at 16th Street and Broadway (just south of the downtown loop), with its tiered glass and steel half-domes, has a design reminiscent of the world-famous Sydney Opera House.
Colleges and universities
Top 5 largest colleges by total enrollment (within the MSA)
The Kansas City Kansan serves Wyandotte County, having moved from print to an online format in 2009. Additional weekly papers in the metropolitan area include the Liberty Tribune, Sun Newspapers of Johnson County, The Examiner in Independence and eastern Jackson County, The Pitch, and the Kansas-Missouri Sentinel. The area is also served by two newspapers focused the area's faith-based population: The Metro Voice Christian Newspaper and the Jewish Chronicle. The city's Hispanic and Latino American community is served by Dos Mundos, a bilingual newspaper with articles in Spanish and English, and Mi Raza magazine, the area's only weekly Hispanic publication printed in Spanish. The Kansas City Call serves the African American community publishing its paper weekly.
According to Arbitron, about 1.5 million people over the age of 12 live within the Kansas City DMA, making it the 30th largest market for radio and 31st for television according to Nielsen. The Kansas City television and radio markets cover 32 counties encompassing northwestern Missouri and northeast Kansas.
Television stations in the Kansas City metropolitan area, with all major network affiliates represented, include:
The Kansas City television market is in very close proximity to two other media markets, St. Joseph and Topeka. As such, most of the television stations in the Kansas City area are receivable over-the-air in portions of both markets, including their principal cities; likewise, stations from Topeka are receivable as far east as Kansas City, Kansas and stations from St. Joseph are viewable as far south as Kansas City, Missouri's immediate northern suburbs.
Over 30 FM and 20 AM radio stations broadcast in the Kansas City area, with stations from Topeka, St. Joseph and Carrollton also reaching into the metropolitan area. The highest-rated radio stations, according to Arbitron are:
The Kansas City metropolitan area's largest private employer is Cerner Corporation. Cerner, a global healthcare IT company which is headquartered in North Kansas City, employs nearly 10,000 people in the area with a total workforce of nearly 20,000 people including global employees. In August 2014, the company announced its acquisition of competitor Siemens Healthcare, which, if approved, will further increase Cerner's total number of employees. Cerner has several campuses across the area with its World Headquarters building in North Kansas City, Innovations Campus in South Kansas City, and Continuous Campus in the Kansas City, Kansas area.
The following companies and organizations, excluding educational institutions, are among the larger ones that are headquartered in or have since relocated from the metropolitan area (headquarters of most companies are located in Kansas City, Missouri, unless otherwise noted):