Even though Summer is in full swing the KC Parks and Recreation Department is looking toward the future after announcing they will be improving and upgrading parks and city recreation areas across the metro.

In a release, KCPR announced they will spend $6.3 million on upgrades and improvements across the city. Included in the upgrades, is a $3.2 million aquatic facility at the Southeast Community Center.  The aquatic facility will include a pool, complete with zero-depth entry, spray features, deep area for lap swimming, swim lessons and lifeguard training.  Construction is expected to be completed in late 2023. 

Additionally, $1 million will be spent as the local match to design a bridge so that residents living on the north side of Brush Creek can easily walk to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Park. This will be combined with federal funding recently announced by U.S. Rep. Emanuel Cleaver.  

The Hillcrest Community Center will receive $250,000 to make repairs to the building and parking lot, and another $220,000 will fund a contract for regular upgrades of exercise equipment at community centers.  

“We are thrilled to be making these improvements,” said Christopher Cotten, Kansas City Parks director. “Improved amenities will bring renewed energy to the communities who get to enjoy them every day.”

 Other playgrounds and park upgrades will focus on the following locations:  

  • Budd Park in the Historic Northeast areas  

  • Tower Park in the Waldo neighborhood at 75th & Holmes

  • Cooley Park along North Antioch Road  

  • Barry Road Park on North Congress Avenue

  • Ashland Square Park at Elmwood Avenue and East 23rd Street

Recently, more attention has been brought to more equitable investments in parks across the city, specifically on the East side of Kansas City. Some residents are critical that often maintenance and improvements are deferred in areas east of Troost, while neighborhoods in the West are given more priority.

“Children in every part of Kansas City deserve to have the very best park facilities, and these projects will improve playgrounds and community centers in every council district citywide,” added KC Parks Board President Jack Holland.