In State of the City, Lenexa mayor highlights Old Town and City Center as key areas of long-term visioning

Michael Boehm
Lenexa Mayor Michael Boehm in his 2019 State of the City address spoke of citizen-led efforts on the visioning process for Old Town and City Center.

Lenexa’s future lies not just in the continued development of City Center, but also in renewed vitality of Old Town, Mayor Michael Boehm told the audience at his 2019 State of the City address.

The mayor’s address, which was hosted by the Lenexa Chamber of Commerce, highlighted much of these citizen-led visioning efforts being guided by city leaders and staff. Ultimately, residents have asked to keep the city’s community as a “vibrant, connected, hometown feeling, with a distinct culture within a larger metropolitan area.”

Vision 2040, the city’s third visioning process, is working to do just that, Boehm said. For example, the city allocated $26 million last year for maintenance and new projects, he added.

The mayor highlighted other key areas for city and business development:

  • $26 million was budgeted last year for construction of Ridgeview Road from Highway K-10 to Prairie Star Parkway
  • $3.2 million is budgeted this year for street, walkability and lighting improvements along Quivira Road between 79th and 99th streets
  • The city kicked off its Complete Streets program

Last year, about $466 million in new construction took place, adding to the five-year total of more than $1.8 billion of new investment and development all over Lenexa. These include 332 townhomes at the future Sonoma Hill, plus commercial development of Sonoma Plaza along 87th Street Parkway. At least 80 percent of the commercial project has been leased or sold, the mayor added.

On top of these developments, the city is also welcoming several new businesses, including:

Boehm also applauded the new growth at City Center along 87th Street Parkway and Renner Boulevard, including the six-story Kiewit office, The District mixed-used project, the Shawnee Mission School District’s new Aquatic Center and the Lenexa City Center Library.

Also in development are The Silo Modern Farmhouse restaurant and the Central Green office building.

While all of this development is underway, the city has celebrated its one-year anniversary of both the Lenexa Rec Center and the Public Market. Plus, the city begins its second year of the Lenexa Farmers Market this spring.

Boehm said the city plans to continue momentum at Old Town as well.

“While the success of City Center gets an abundance of attention, it’s important to remember that we value all parts of Lenexa — especially Old Town,” Boehm said, citing the city’s work with residents and investors over the past year to create a long-term vision for the area in terms of development and redevelopment.

Boehm spoke of the city’s study last year to review the city’s community center and senior center looking for ways to improve the city’s commitment to the area.

“The recommendations reviewed by the governing body earlier this year were very well received, and we anticipate advancing the plan through the budget process in the coming years,” Boehm said.

Meanwhile, the city has found a cost-effective stationary wayside train horn system to lessen the impact on area businesses and homes near the Noland and Pflumm road crossings along Sante Fe Drive.

Boehm also honored city staff for their commitment to excellence; he especially thanked city manager Eric Wade, who is retiring after 35 years of service to the city.

“Looking back over the past year with all that has been accomplished, it’s no wonder Money Magazine named Lenexa the Best Place to Live in Kansas,” Boehm said.