Troost MAX travels from downtown to the Crossroads district, Hospital Hill and south along Troost to Bannister. Troost MAX offers local service south of 75th Street. Other major destinations include the East Village development (currently under construction), Discovery Center, UMKC Hospital Hill and Main Campus, Rockhurst University, The Landing, Truman Medical Center, and Children’s Mercy Hospital. Park and Rides are located at 31st & Troost, 95th & Troost, and the Bannister & Hillcrest area. Trail Connections are a vital part of Troost MAX: a future trail between Troost & Bannister will connect to the Trolley Track Trail near 87th & Garfield.
MAX stations are well-lit and feature a distinctive, easily identifiable information marker, and a specially designed passenger shelter. The stations are clearly marked and named, featuring easy-to-understand route maps and real-time transit information. Riders have instant and constantly updated access to the exact arrival time through GPS technology and real-time signs at MAX stations.
Troost MAX Artwork
For the first time, the Kansas City Area Transportation Authority has commissioned original public art at prominent locations along Troost MAX. Artists drew upon community input and local history to create interesting and compelling works.
31st & Troost, “Catalyst,” Matt Dehaemers
This large-scale incorporates linguistic history in the structure’s design. Dehaemers designed the structure to resemble a tree, playing off one origin of the word “Troost,” which can mean tree. The motion of the structure results in a creation that is constantly in flux, much like the history of Troost. Dehaemers recently completed Seven Sentinels at the city’s vehicle impound facility. Nationally, he has been recognized by the Public Art Network’s Year in Review for four years in a row starting in 2004, and again in 2009. See a video of the sculpture in motion.
39th & Troost, “Unite," Jefrë
The Catholic Key covered the March 2011 dedication of Unite. Jefrë created a sculpture that draws on the image of hands coming together, evoking a joining together or way to cross a divide. The artist worked with area children, gathering drawings of what the children want to be when they grow up. These drawings of doctors, firefighters, engineers and other vocations are incorporated into the sculpture. Jefrë is an internationally acclaimed emerging public artist based in Miami who has received numerous awards for his innovative designs. After ten years working with international design firms, Jefrë launched his own couture public art studio in 2008 with a focus on environmental art, green roofs, boutique plazas, parks, and public art master plans. In his first year, he has been selected for six national blind public art competitions in New Orleans, Washington D.C., Toledo, Palm Beach, Orlando, and Philadelphia.
75th & Troost, “Every Day I Have the Blues,” David Dahlquist
The installation chosen for the 75th & Troost MetroStation is a tribute to Kansas City’s rich jazz history. The sculpture is an oversized piano structure with LED lighting. It is a powerful red epoxy painted steel and aluminum structure. The open, cantilevered framework suggests the raised lid of a grand piano; pedestrians can actually walk under the structure on a walkway or sit on benches resembling the piano’s keyboard. David B. Dahlquist is a nationally-recognized public artist and teacher. He is the Creative Director of RDG Dahlquist Art Studio, a comprehensive design and fabrication facility within RDG Planning & Design, specializing in the integration of artwork within building architecture and the landscape.
The Troost Bridge
The new bridge over Brush Creek is a project of the City of Kansas City, Mo. On the pedestrian walkway of the bridge, a series of polished stainless steel of panels reflect light throughout the pedestrian walkways on the bridge. The panels will evoke the movement of the water flowing under the bridge, as well as the motion of the pedestrian, bicycle and transit traffic across the bridge. See drawings of the bridge: View from the pedestrian walkway Side view of the Troost Bridge at daytime View of the reflective glass wall at nighttime Side view of the Troost Bridge at nighttime
Troost MAX incorporates green features and technologies. The MAX fleet includes five hybrid electric buses. Hybrid buses operate on battery power from start-up until a speed of 25 mph at which time a diesel engine supplies power and recharges the batteries. This action reduces nitrous oxide emissions and increases fuel economy by 10%-20%. Other green features at select stations and park-and-rides include:
- Rain gardens at several MAX stations to capture and filter water run-off
- Posts or bollards that include solar-powered lighting
- Recycling receptacles
- Solar-powered trash compactors
- Pervious concrete that allows water to soak through to the subsoil, reducing the amount of polluted water that runs off of the pavement surface
Rain gardens at stations
Solar-powered lighted bollards
Funding for MAX
Capital federal funds were used for planning, construction, vehicles, stations, and technology:
- Total budget $30.6 million, $24.5 million from federal grants
- This includes $18 million for construction and fabrication
Local entities provided a required 20% match:
- KCP&L Streetscape Funding
- City of Kansas City, Mo., PIAC funds for streetscape
- Property and funds for Park-and-Ride at 31st & Troost
- Pedestrian improvements on Troost Bridge at Brush Creek
- Other ATA and city sources
Trolley Track Trail
Update, Spring 2014: A chain link fence has been placed around the unsafe portion of the trail between Troost & Woodland.
Additionally, we are putting asphalt on a small portion of the trail just south of Waldo to 77th St., for several hundred feet.
NOTICE: January 2012 - Until further notice, a detour on the Trolley Track Trail between Troost and Woodland will be in effect. Pedestrians and bicyclists should use 85th Street instead of the trail. In late 2010, a hole was discovered in the trail east of Troost and south of 85th Street. Over the last year, KCATA hired consultants and geologists to investigate the cause of the sink hole and repair it. These repairs have been completed, but concerns still remain. There is a larger area of underground mines along the trail between Woodland and Troost. There is no evidence of an imminent collapse. However, until the area can be more thoroughly assessed, KCATA has created a detour and closed this section of trail in the interest of public safety. Barriers have been placed on the trail and signs will be installed to direct trail users to travel on the detour on 85th Street between Troost and Woodland.
The Harry Wiggins Trolley Track Trail is a popular recreational facility for walkers, runners and cyclists. The trail is named after the late Senator Wiggins who throughout his 28 years of representing the 10th district, sponsored KCATA’s tax legislation. The trail was the site of Kansas City’s last streetcar line, the Country Club route. It’s six miles long, from Volker to 85th & Prospect. The streetcar right of way is seven miles, from Westport Road to 85th Street. An original, renovated Country Club Streetcar Station is located at 54th and Brookside. The trail surface is compacted, crushed limestone. However, the surface south of 85th Street is asphalt, as are some other short sections in areas subject to brief flooding in heavy rain. KCATA owns and maintains the trail. The KCATA, the City of Kansas City, Mo., and to a lesser extent, private sector adjoining property owners have jointly invested more than $5 million in enhancement projects.
TIGER (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery) is a discretionary grant program of the U.S. Department of Transportation funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. In 2010, the Kansas City region was awarded, on a competitive basis, $50 million in TIGER funding to make transportation infrastructure improvements along several regional transit corridors and in the Green Impact Zone in Kansas City, Mo. To track the progress on these projects visit the TIGER Tracker.
Green Impact Zone
TIGER funds will be used to rehabilitate the infrastructure in the Green Impact Zone, focusing on better transit stop amenities, traffic-signal improvements, street resurfacing and sidewalk replacement, Troost Avenue pedestrian bridge, and other neighborhood improvements.
Approximately $1.42 million in TIGER funds will be used for Missouri corridors transit improvements (North Oak Trafficway and U.S. 24 and U.S. 40 corridors in eastern Jackson County). The project consists of improving bus stops and increasing pedestrian access to and from these bus stops.
State Avenue Transit Improvements
A total of $10.3 million of the $50 million TIGER grant awarded to the Kansas City region was allocated to the State Avenue corridor. TIGER grant funds in the east-west State Avenue corridor in Kansas City, Kan., will support existing transit services through improved stops, shelters, pedestrian connections and building two new transit centers. The two new transit centers for the State Avenue corridor will be located at the corner of 7th Street and Minnesota Avenue and at the corner of 47th Street and State Avenue. These facilities will bring dedicated transit centers to downtown Kansas City, Kan. to facilitate transit connections and transfers.
Stop Optimization is a multi-faceted, comprehensive analysis of every bus stop in the system, a few routes at a time, aimed to improve:
- Service (quality, efficiency, safety, etc.)
- Accessibility (sidewalks, concrete connected to curb, etc.)
- Amenity allocation
This program addresses these goals by:
- Reducing the number of stops
- Relocation of and/or concrete improvements at remaining stops
- Addition, removal, or relocation of amenities based on ridership trends
The first, and most visible, component of Stop Optimization is the removal and merging of stops. Stops are initially identified for removal based on numerous factors, including stop spacing, ridership data, accessibility, existing amenities, nearby origin/destination points, etc., which are considered in conjunction with KCATA’s Service Guidelines and industry best practices. Prior to finalizing any removals, we consider all public comments received in response to rider alerts and bulletins indicating stops proposed for removal, ultimately keeping most stops with multiple comments
As of July 2016, Stop Optimization has resulted in 620 stops outside of downtown KCMO being removed from 22 routes, which represents roughly 27% of the stops outside downtown along those routes. Of the stops removed, 54% averaged less than one boarding per weekday and 88% averaged less than five.
How does removing stops benefit riders?
The simple answer is that by having fewer stops, we are able to provide quicker, more reliable service with less frequent stop-starts. While we cannot attribute all of the improvement to Stop Optimization, the most definitive demonstration that Stop Optimization has produced results in this capacity is the drastic on-time performance (OTP) improvement for 30 Northeast following implementation.
30 Northeast Saturday On-Time Performance
Additionally, by reducing the number of stops, we can better allocate limited resources to improve accessibility and amenities at remaining stops. So far, accessibility improvements have been achieved entirely by relocating stops, mostly from the nearside of intersections to the farside, which also has operational and safety benefits. By relocating stops we have improved accessibility at roughly 100 stops with minimal costs. We anticipate concrete improvements at roughly 20 high priority stops to begin before the end of the year.
The third component of Stop Optimization consists of removing benches, shelters, etc., from removed stops or those with relatively low ridership, and reallocating them to higher ridership stops, using the standards set forth in KCATA’s Bus Stop Guidelines.
Amenity Placement Standards
(Minimum average weekday boardings for new amenity placement)
|Amenity||Local Service||Commuter Service|
|Trash Can/Recycling Bin||25||25|
Amenity Removal Standards
(Threshold for removing an established amenity based on average weekday boardings)
|Amenity||Local Service||Commuter Service|
|Corner Schedule||less than 5||less than 3|
|Bench||less than 10||less than 5|
|Trash Can/Recycling Bin||less than 10||less than 10|
|Shelter||less than 25||less than 15|
|Second Shelter||less than 100||N/A|
While these standards served as a guide, we made additions liberally and removals conservatively. A second wave of amenity additions will be made as ridership shifts from stop removals are fully understood with new ridership data.
Amenity Reallocation Summary
(As of July 1, 2016)
|Amenity||Number||Average weekday ridership
at impacted stop
|Shelter upgrade from bench||4||65|
|Bench downgrade from shelter||16||15|
As the chart indicates, there have been more shelters removed than installed and more benches installed than removed; however, far more riders have benefited from amenity upgrades than been inconvenienced by amenity downgrades. Additionally, quite a few locations identified for shelter addition/upgrade are among our top priority stops for concrete work improvements to improve accessibility and support a shelter. Lastly, while financial savings were not a primary consideration for the Stop Optimization program, removing the 31 shelters identified above, will save an estimated $275k/year in maintenance costs; resources that can be reallocated to upgrading and maintaining stops with higher ridership.
State Ave. Connex
Enhanced Transit Facilities for State Avenue
KCATA and Unified Government Transit secured federal TIGER funding to improve the Minnesota/State Avenue transit corridor. The improvements werew made along the transit route that begins at the 10th & Main Transit Center in downtown Kansas City, Mo., travels through Downtown Kansas City, Ks., and ends at Village West. The route serves activity centers and neighborhoods along State and Minnesota avenues.
Why Transit is Important to State Avenue
Effective transit connects employment centers, educational facilities, neighborhoods and shopping and entertainment areas. As a major east-west route through the Kansas City metropolitan area, State Avenue links Kansas City’s revitalized urban core with new development occurring farther west. With two new transit centers providing regional connections, State Avenue Connex supports the regional vision for enhanced and expanded regional transit in Kansas City. State Avenue Connex will improve transit facilities and continue to provide access to jobs, support economic development, and provide efficient transportation.
What’s Included with the Improvements
State Avenue Connex includes transit centers at 7th and Minnesota Avenue and at 47th and State Avenue (formerly Indian Springs). Both transit centers have been custom-built with improved passenger waiting areas and amenities such as real-time passenger information. Other State Avenue corridor Connex stop improvements include:
- Bus passenger shelters and benches
- Bus stop platforms
- Landscaping and environmentally friendly features
- Improved pedestrian connections
Design Process and Schedule
KCATA, UGT, business leaders, neighborhoods, elected officials, the general public, other stakeholders, and a consultant design team worked together to improve the State Avenue transit cooridor. The preliminary design process began in the spring of 2011, and final design was completed in early 2012. Construction began in Summer 2012 and finished in 2013.
How State Avenue Connex Improvements were Funded
A Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) Grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation is funding the State Avenue bus enhancements. The grant awarded included $10.5 million for the design and implementation of these physical enhancements along the corridor. State Avenue improvements are an intermediate step to a MAX Bus Rapid Transit Line.
View a Fact Sheet about the State Avenue project. [PDF]
RideKC: Bridj Pilot
In March 2016, KCATA began a pilot program to test how on-demand services could integrate into the suite of transportation options available in the Kansas City region. The partnership between Bridj, KCATA, and Ford was the first U.S. public-private collaboration bringing together a major U.S. transit system, an automaker, and an urban technology company to enhance existing mass transit by providing greater mobility options.The pilot was designed to share our learnings within our community; to inform future project/programs decisions; and to provide a demonstration project to the global community of public transportation providers relating to how service adaptations are required to meet the needs of an ever mobile, connected populace.
As a component of the pilot program, researchers at the Transportation Sustainability Research Center (TSRC) at the University of California at Berkeley conducted an evaluation of the RideKC: Bridj pilot program. TSRC’s goal in its evaluation is to assess the travel behavior impacts of the service, as well as to provide operational and institutional analysis. The evaluation consists of multiple pieces of analysis, including a survey of users, a survey of those who have downloaded the Bridj app, and a community survey.
The evaluation is available here: TSRC Analysis (PDF).
Features, route, station design and funding
MAX is RideKC’s bus rapid transit line (BRT) serving highly populated residential and commercial corridors in Kansas City, Mo.
Plans are underway to implement this premium service along Prospect Ave. and into downtown KCMO. From its vehicles to service, MAX touts its unique identity. Customers reach their destinations with greater ease because of MAX’s faster, more reliable service. MAX vehicles have a distinctively sleek design, while MAX stations are substantially larger than standard bus stops. In addition, one of the more popular customer-friendly MAX features includes real-time arrival information that helps transit customers know exactly when MAX will arrive.
By adding up-to-date technologies and an array of modern passenger amenities, Prospect MAX will substantially enhance the transit experience for existing riders while attracting new transit customers.
- Frequent service
- Traffic signal priority
- Fewer stops for faster service
- Highly visible MAX stations
- Sleek, distinctly designed vehicles
- Unique branding
In addition, Prospect MAX will offer:
- Ticket-vending machines at select locations
- Free Wi-Fi on buses and at MAX stations
- Mobility hubs with on-demand services such as Bridj, bikeshare and carshare
KCATA currently operates two MAX BRT lines – Main Street MAX opened in 2005 and Troost Avenue MAX opened in 2011. Both routes have positively impacted the community with:
- Improved jobs access
- Streetscape improvements
- Transit-related economic development
- Improved safety
- Public artwork
Bus service for Prospect Avenue MAX is patterned after Troost Avenue MAX, resulting in increased service, reduced travel times and stronger connections to neighborhoods. Below is a summary of the service details.
Downtown Prospect Avenue MAX stations are designed to blend with the downtown streetscape, making it easier for pedestrian traffic on sidewalks.
Prospect Avenue MAX stations will feature an interactive smart kiosk, real-time bus arrival information, shelter protection from the elements and enhanced lighting for improved safety and greater visibility.
Funding and Implementation Schedule
With service similar to rail, MAX BRT operates at a fraction of the cost. KCATA estimates Prospect MAX project will cost approximately $54 million. The project will be funded through a mix of federal and local funds.
- Federal Transit Administration (FTA) Small Starts Program - $29.98 million
- Surface Transportation Program (STP) - $8 million
- City of Kansas City, Mo. - $12.5 million
- KCATA - $3 million
2016: Environmental Documentation, FTA Funding Decision, Approved CE, Project Development
2017: Final Design, Vehicle Purchase begins, Construction Grant Agreement
2020: Startup Testing & Operations, Begin Service
Click map for a larger view.Back
MAX & Bus Rapid Transit
MAX Bus Rapid Transit service provides faster, more frequent service, and features the latest technology in the transit industry. MAX uses easy-to-identify vehicles. Its stops are well-lit, with highly visible information markers and newly designed passenger shelters. Information markers feature real-time MAX arrival information so that customers may wait with greater confidence. Read additional facts on MAX BRT service.
MAX Is Coming To Troost
- Fewer stops for faster service
- Well-lit, attractive stations will feature real-time arrival signs loaded with information
- Uniquely designed, accessible passenger shelters with attractive landscaping
- Hybrid buses
- Easy, convenient schedules and route maps
- The latest GPS technology for reliable, rapid service
Kansas City’s first BRT line, otherwise known as MAX, currently serves River Market, downtown, Crown Center, midtown and the Plaza. Read more about the MAX.Back
In 2008, voters defeated a proposal to fund a light rail line from Vivion Road and North Oak Trafficway to Bruce R. Watkins Roadway and 63rd Street. KCATA is completing Phase II of the Alternative Analysis, which will be available on this website when finalized. Below is information about the project and light rail planning in Kansas City.
Final Land Use Summary
The Final Land Use Report [PDF format] analyzes conditions and current plans and policies affecting development patterns within the proposed transit corridor. The report discussed the proposed route in relation to the federal government’s New Starts criteria. The report also includes recommendations based on both this land use analysis and the real estate market analysis, which assesses the future development potential within several market areas. The project study area is an approximate 12-mile transit corridor between the intersection of I-29 with North Oak Trafficway and US-169 in the northern portion of Kansas City, Missouri to the intersection of 63rd Street and Bruce R. Watkins Drive. The corridor includes the Kansas City metropolitan region’s most concentrated employment and residential areas and many of the region’s significant institutional and cultural attractions.
Assessment of Proposed Light Rail Corridor
This technical memorandum [PDF format] provides a land use assessment for the proposed Kansas City 14-mile light rail corridor. When preparing funding recommendations to Congress, the Federal Transit Administration undertakes a formal evaluation of all projects applying for New Starts funding. This technical memorandum explains the conclusions of a land use assessment. It includes a summary and slide show of the findings. The assessment is based on the FTA land use evaluation process and breaks the alignment into eleven discrete Market Areas. In their current conditions, none of the market areas provide a strong case for benefiting greatly from, or supporting, a light rail line. However, many of the market areas are in flux, or could be redeveloped to become more transit oriented.
North/South Corridor Alternative Analysis Report (Draft)
The North/South Corridor runs from Vivion Road in the Northland to Meyer Boulevard in the south and encompasses many of the region’s most important traffic generators. The Alternatives Analysis is intended to provide decision-makers with the information they require to assess a major investment in transit. North South Corridor DRAFT Alternatives Analysis Report (PDF files) - Chapters 1-2 - Chapter 3 - Chapter 4 - Chapter 5 - Chapter 6 - Chapters 7-11
Next Steps for Light Rail in Kansas City
The results of the Alternatives Analysis will serve to inform the ongoing efforts being led by MARC to develop a long-term regional transit solution.
A video shows what light rail in Kansas City may have looked like, including the line proposed in the November 2008 election. The video includes stations and light rail vehicles.Back
Kansas City Streetcar
Downtown Streetcar Moves Forward
Kansas City's Downtown Streetcar is moving full speed ahead. The two-mile line will run largely on Main Street from the River Market to Union Station. The streetcar will run in existing street lanes, just like other vehicles. The streetcar route will include 18 stops, spaced roughly two blocks apart. Construction of the line and stops will be completed two to three blocks at a time, and opening day is expected in mid-2015. Utility investigations started, and construction is expected to begin this summer. KCATA serves as a technical adviser for the city's compliance with Federal Transit Administration criteria and guidelines, and to the streetcar authority. To follow the progress of the downtown streetcar, visit http://www.kcstreetcar.org.
Downtown Service Improvement Concept
Downtown Kansas City, Missouri, is currently served by 42 KCATA and eight Johnson County Transit “The JO” bus routes, designed primarily to transport workers into and out of downtown. The major focal point of service is KCATA’s 10th & Main Transit Center, but its small size requires many routes to operate to other locations in downtown. Consequently, there is currently little consistency in how bus service operates downtown. With development of new convention, sporting, and cultural facilities, Power and Light District, and more people moving downtown, travel demands are changing. This concept is designed to improve downtown transit service, better meet the evolving needs of Kansas City, and provide a better balance of service to residents, workers, and visitors.
The proposed downtown service improvement concept includes the following interrelated elements:
- The reconfiguration of downtown routes based on an intersecting trunk route service design, forming Transit Emphasis Corridors (TEC) along Grand Boulevard and 11th and 12th Streets to simplify, accelerate, and improve downtown transit service.
- Facilitate connections between bus routes and streetcar service.
- Bus lanes on Grand Boulevard and on 11th and 12th Streets to make service faster and more reliable.
- The consolidation of regular bus stops into Transit Emphasis Corridor (TEC) Stations to make waiting more comfortable and service faster. TEC Stations would provide facilities and amenities similar to MAX stops.
- The development of a new East Village transit hub to improve connections and elimination of 10th & Main Transit Center.
Presentation from Feb. 11 meetings [PDF, 3MB]