William Dietrich is speaking. He’s showing photos of downtown Kansas City from 2002, and it was exactly as I remembered, a dead, unsightly, unloved urban core. Back then, the Kansas City folks were visiting Oklahoma City to learn from our experience with the original MAPS (which was completed in 2002).
Folks laugh as he shows off photos from a U-2 visit in which they used the blighted downtown as a backdrop for promotional materials that portrayed them in an apocalyptic America.
President of Downtown Council of Kansas City
- Downtown Kansas City abandoned in 1970s, dead 20 years ago.
- First attempted to get a downtown ballpark built. Too much inertia at the time.
- Did get a performing arts center located downtown.
It was 2002 that Dietrich’s Downtown Council of Kansas City was formed. They did a huge redevelopment master plan where it was determined the city needed an entertainment district, riverfront district, arts district, convention center, and amenities that would attract creative businesses, keep existing businesses and grow them…