Congress notified of pending $174-million grant for KC Streetcar Main Street Extension

Dec. 10, 2020
The 3.5-mile extension will connect the line’s current terminus at Union Station south to the University of Missouri – Kansas City.

The city of Kansas City, Mo., in partnership with the Kansas City Streetcar Authority and Kansas City Area Transportation Authority, are entering the final steps to securing a $174-million grant from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) for the Kansas City Streetcar Main Street Extension.  

The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) gave Congress the required 30-day notice of review prior to the signing and execution of a Full Funding Agreement (FFGA) through FTA’s Capital Investment Grants Program.  

It is anticipated the FFGA for the 3.5-mile extension will be signed and executed in January 2021. The grant would be the largest transit grant awarded in the region’s history, according to Tom

Gerend, executive director of the KC Streetcar Authority. He added that it will also be a project that brings lasting impacts.

“The extension of the streetcar represents the next step in our vision to make transportation free and available to all and will provide good jobs to Kansas Citians as it is being built,” said Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas. 

The project will connect growing activity centers in the corridor, improve service and support economic development.

The project scope includes nine stations, expanding the existing vehicle maintenance facility, procuring six vehicles, road work, transit signal priority and queue-jumps, intersection and sidewalk improvements, as well as a communications system.

The transit project was approved to enter the New Starts Project Development phase in 2018 and New Starts Engineering in May 2020. The $174 million that would be provided through the CIG Program represents 49.5 percent of the total $351.6-million project cost. The remaining cost is being funded by local sources.

Revenue service on the KC Streetcar Main Street Extension is anticipated to start in June 2025 with streetcars operating every 10 minutes during the week and every 12 minutes on weekends. Work completed to date includes project development, identification of track and station stop locations, coordination of utility relocation, including water and sewer lines, solicitation of proposals for streetcar vehicle procurement, construction general management and public outreach.

About the Author

Mischa Wanek-Libman | Group Editorial Director

Mischa Wanek-Libman serves as editor in chief of Mass Transit magazine and group editorial director of the Infrastructure and Aviation Group at Endeavor Business Media. She is responsible for developing and maintaining the editorial direction of the group and is based in the western suburbs of Chicago.

Wanek-Libman has spent more than 20 years covering transportation issues including construction projects and engineering challenges for various commuter railroads and transit agencies. She has been recognized for editorial excellence through her individual work, as well as for collaborative content. 

She is an active member of the American Public Transportation Association's Marketing and Communications Committee and serves as a Board Observer on the National Railroad Construction and Maintenance Association (NRC) Board of Directors.  

She is a graduate of Drake University, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism and Mass Communication with a major in magazine journalism and a minor in business management.