The College and Metcalf area is Overland Park’s largest concentration of office employment and is major regional activity center for the Kansas City metropolitan area. It is a major destination for visitors with the Overland Park Convention Center, eight hotels and major adjacent retail centers nearby.
In 2018, the City went through a six month-long master planning process focused on the College and Metcalf area. This study analyzed workplace and community needs of about 470 acres of land along College Blvd. between Lowell and Nall. This area is uniquely positioned to support innovative mixed-use development.
The OP Central Master Plan considered the current uses of the area and provides high-level recommendations to make the area more walkable, vibrant, and engaging for residents, workers and visitors.
It creates a concept master plan for long-term development, transportation improvements, programming, design and character of the area.
The study included public engagement from visioning sessions, focus groups and a community workforce survey. Participants included City staff, a steering committee, a workplace group, a hospitality group, and a large group of residents.
The study was completed with funding from the Mid-America Regional Council’s Planning Sustainable Places program.
Since the approval of the recommendations, the City has implemented changes in the College and Metcalf area to work toward the goals of OP Central.
This included a “road diet” on College Boulevard between Metcalf and Nall.
Two traffic lanes in each direction, plus a buffer space and a parking lane, replaced the previous three lanes of traffic. The changes added about 100 on-street parking spots adjacent to highly-used destinations in the area.
The work to update the street took place during a previously-scheduled mill and overlay project in 2020. Even with the reduction in lanes, traffic is still at 50% of the capacity for the street.
The City also added bike lanes on nearby 110th Street, 112th Street and Lamar Avenue; and shared use paths along Nall and part of Metcalf.
In 2021, the City began an additional study to build on the recommendations of the OP Central report, which provided a vision of a “walkable, engaging, and inviting” multi-use urban district.
Long distances, large parking lots, expansive lawns and busy streets in the OP Central district create obstacles for people to move about the area on foot, bike, wheelchair and other non-vehicular means of travel.
Recommendations to solve some of the mobility challenges in this area could possibly:
This study will develop a detailed, action-oriented program for a connected bicycle and pedestrian-friendly OP Central district.
The following events are major milestones in the study and opportunities for public engagement. These dates will be updated as they are finalized and the project progresses.