In October 2010, a consortium of more than 60 regional partners, led by the Mid-America Regional Council, received a $4.25 million planning grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to advance the implementation of the Regional Plan for Sustainable Development, Creating Sustainable Places. Creating Sustainable Places is not only a regional vision and plan to guide how we grow and develop, but a strategy for moving our communities from planning to action. The 2019 Planning Sustainable Places program will continue to serve as a single local government assistance program intended to specifically respond to these goals and facilitate the following objectives:
- Support the development and implementation of local activity center plans consistent with Creating Sustainable Places principles, identified regional activity centers, and the land use policy direction outlined in Transportation Outlook 2040
- Support localized public engagement and community consensus building
- Support the identification and conceptualization of land use strategies, transportation projects, and related sustainable development initiatives that help to realize and advance the objectives identified in the Creating Sustainable Places initiative, Transportation Outlook 2040, and the MARC Board’s adopted policy statement on regional land use direction
- Support the conceptualization, development, and implementation of Creating Sustainable Places projects
The focus of this project (Downtown Active Transportation Plan) is to create a Sustainable Places Plan that addresses the following key priorities in Olathe:
- Determine a preferred concept for Kansas Avenue, include drive lanes, turn lanes and bike lanes reflecting the City of Olathe’s Transportation Master Plan
- Develop a preferred concept for appropriate transitions from downtown sidewalks and bike paths to the existing alternate transportation infrastructure
- Estimate traffic volume and anticipated routes after full development in accordance with Envision Downtown master plan recommendations
- Establish design guidelines for typical roadway sections, locations of sidewalks and bike paths
The new Johnson County Courthouse will change the face of downtown Olathe. In particular, Kansas Avenue provides opportunities for changes to adjoining land use and reduction in parking will provide a new footprint for additional active transportation infrastructure which can enhance more sustainable development. The intent of this project is to further refine the specifics of how the transportation network can meet the needs of all users, in particular, to promote and provide connected opportunities for transit, bicycle, and pedestrian users.
WHAT IS ACTIVE TRANSPORTATION?
Active transportation is any self-propelled, human-powered mode of transportation, such as walking or bicycling. Physical inactivity is a major contributor to the steady rise in rates of obesity, diabetes, heart disease, stroke, and other chronic health conditions. By designing communities to encourage active transportation with safe and welcoming walking and biking infrastructure, we can help reduce the negative health impacts that come with a car dependent culture.
Martin Shukert, FAICP Principal Designer
Cory Scott, AICP Project Manager
Stephanie Rouse, AICP Co-Manager
Jayne Siemens Communications
Dave Nolte, PE, ENV SP Principal Engineer
Amy McCurdy, PE, PTOE Traffic Analysis