After months of inconvenience, the improvements along Wichita’s 9th Street between I-135 and Hillside are complete and for those who traverse the area, it is definitely time to celebrate. However, everyone is invited to come out on Sat., Aug. 31, for a community-wide celebration to see not only the road improvement, but the commissioned art that’s been made a part of the area.

The dedication ceremony, sponsored by the City of Wichita will begin at 10 a.m. at the intersection of 9th and Minnesota. Ninth Street will be closed to traffic east of I-135 and parking access will be available off Piatt.

Speakers for the event include Senator Oletha Faust-Goudeau, State Representative Gail Finney, Wichita City Council Member Brandon Johnson, Sedgwick County Commissioner Lacey Cruse and former Wichita City Council Member Lavonta Williams. 

After the dedication, the Urban League of Kansas will keep the party going with a community celebration from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. at the corner of 9th and Grove. DJ Slim will be playing music, and there will be food, prizes and games, so bring the family.

Improvements made along 9th Street include paving, drainage and pedestrian upgrades – totaling $3.5 million. 

To help improve the beauty of the area, the city collaborated with local artist Ellamonique Baccus, who brought lively aesthetics to the scenery. With her help, enhancements have been made that include an interstate gateway, the Kwanzaa Plaza, and Adinkra sidewalk panels representing community values.

More than 100 community members collaborated with Baccus by painting and placing tiles. 

This renovation also brought us the Knowledge Bus Stop and the “Cultivating the Seeds of Our Future” mural.

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