Monday, November 2, 2009

areas of concern in Kansas City

This past June, The Kansas City Star published a three-part series called the Murder Factory (read here). The story centered on the “64130” zip code area of Kansas City, shown in the map above, outlined in red.

- Today, I listened to a committee leading the Green Impact Zone Project (the zone is superimposed upon 64130 above).
- On Oct. 20, Mike Sanders, the County Executive for Jackson County spoke to our editorial board about “light rail”.
- The Mayor has a “New Tools Committee” to find ways to economically revitalize (resuscitate) this area.
- The new Superintendent of the KCMO School District, Dr. John Covington has a community vision.
- UMKC will conduct an urban planning study in the Green Impact Zone.
- KU wants to do a sociological case study there.
- Tomorrow, the citizens vote either yes or no to continuing the COMBAT (Community-backed Anti-Drug Tax) tax for another seven years.

At this time, these programs and concerns are not resourced. Right now, it’s all rhetoric. In these lean times, the rhetoric has gotten in the way of action and the window of opportunity to resource, to get the money, has come and it will be gone tomorrow unfortunately. I sense the city’s citizens have realized that this area of concern must concern itself with its own concerns while safety dictates a police escort for evening meetings.

This area of Kansas City is unsafe for many reasons.

Today, I worked to write something to explain the incredible, uncoordinated desperation that I sense from the people speaking on behalf of this area of Kansas City. What I realized today is that these uncoordinated agencies require a leader with tenacity and impatience.

It also concerned me that this Green Impact Zone is a publicly funded “.org” -

Resourcing cannot happen until there is leadership, but sadly the emerging leaders, should they emerge, will not have any resources to is a desperate situation.

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