Final Report

The complete Final Report can be downloaded here.

The Executive Summary can be downloaded here.

Executive Summary:

Priorities for Progress:
Connecting Community Opportunities

A Prioritization Plan for Transportation Capital Improvement Projects

What is “Priorities for Progress”?
The Leavenworth County Region, including the cities of Basehor, Lansing, Leavenworth, and Tonganoxie, along with the County of Leavenworth and the Leavenworth County Port Authority (LCPA), in cooperation with MARC and KDOT, is working to prioritize transportation investments in the coming years. Over the past few decades, there have been numerous studies on transportation infrastructure in and around the Leavenworth County region. These studies have focused on projects that range from modest investments to grand visions of new freeways and river crossings. With these wide-ranging studies, however, comes the question: what projects do the leaders, stakeholders and general public in the region want to prioritize to seek regional, state or federal funding? This prioritization plan seeks to best position the communities within Leavenworth County – rural and municipal – to compete for and obtain funding to advance transportation projects. The plan has been branded as Priorities for Progress: Connecting Community Opportunities (“P4P”).

Targeted Funding Sources
Typically, large transportation infrastructure projects are designed and constructed using a variety of external funding sources — competitive processes in which projects from Leavenworth County would be competing against projects from other counties, regions, or states to obtain funding. The project team coordinated with MARC, KDOT, Leavenworth County, and the local jurisdictions to establish criteria for evaluating the projects shown on the map on the back page. These projects were identified by compiling and reviewing nearly 30 planning documents and studies that have been conducted since 2000, as well as an iterative feedback process from stakeholders and the general public. Targeted funding sources and example projects are shown in the table below.

Stakeholder and Public Engagement
This planning effort featured an extensive county-wide engagement effort intended to gather refreshed information from the public about their interests, concerns and ideas; learn by processing public input and trends into a concrete criteria and prioritization process; and create a vision by unveiling a recommended capital improvement project prioritization. Ultimately, the feedback the stakeholder and public engagement process was used to identify new projects, screen out other projects, and refine the scope of several projects initially identified. The priorities of the general public – as compiled across two in-person open houses and an online forum – are shown below.

Identified Transportation Projects and Project Evaluations

Following the stakeholder and public engagement process in Fall 2022, the map to the left summarizes the projects that were ultimately carried forward and recommended for further study and evaluation as part of the P4P effort. Each project was evaluated across more than 30 potential metrics and scored across eight unique categories. More details about each of these projects is provided in the P4P full plan.

Recommended Priorities for Specific Funding Sources
It is recommended that the City Councils of Tonganoxie, Basehor, Lansing, and Leavenworth, along with the Leavenworth County Commission, adopt resolutions of support for this study’s findings and the initial prioritization of projects for the different funding sources.

For KDOT’s IKE Program, which is anticipated to be soliciting projects through the Local Consult process later in 2023, it is recommended that the following projects be submitted for consideration:
> K-5 Improvements/Realignment
> K-7 Combined Interchanges (or individual interchanges)
> Leavenworth City Western Bypass
> West K-10 Connection (West Kansas River Crossing) and the West Tonganoxie Bypass (US 24/40 to K-32)
> Eastern Gateway (at this stage, this project should be submitted for the Project Development pipeline to utilize KDOT funding as a match for the RAISE grant discussed below).

For the USDOT Competitive Grants, which are solicited annually, it is recommended that the following projects be submitted for consideration:
> The Eastern Gateway project should be submitted for a planning study through the RAISE grant program. This project would require support from KDOT, MoDOT, MARC, and active legislative support from U.S. Representatives and Senators.
> The cities of Tonganoxie, Basehor, and Lansing should submit for the SS4A Planning and Demonstration grants.
> Once agencies have established formal safety Action Plans, they should seek to apply for SS4A Implementation grants for specific intersection or corridor projects. For Leavenworth County, one notable project would be packaging together various safety improvements along the Tonganoxie – Eisenhower corridor as a corridor-level project.

For MARC’s STBG and STBG Set-Aside Program, which is anticipated to have a call for projects in 2024, it is recommended that the following projects be submitted for consideration:
> K-5 Improvements/Realignment
> 158th/155th Street Corridor (not including the interchange with 158th Street and I-70, which must be funded by the Kansas Turnpike Authority or local funds)
> Parallel Road Widening – note that it is recommended to reframe this project as “improvements,” as this project includes much needed bicycle and pedestrian facilities, as well as intersection safety improvements.
> Tonganoxie – Eisenhower Corridor Improvements
> Focused Demand-Response Transit Service in Leavenworth-Lansing

For MARC’s PSP Program, which is anticipated to have a call for projects in 2024, it is recommended that the following projects be submitted for planning work that will better position them for STBG funding in subsequent years:
> Combining the 158th Street (north of Basehor) and 20th Street Extension / McIntyre Road extension projects into a study of how to enhance connectivity among Basehor, Lansing, and Leavenworth west of K-7, with a focus on connecting underserved populations with bicycle and pedestrian accommodations, accommodating future transit, and integration with the regional MetroGreen Trail network.
> Conducting a “Kansas River Crossing Study” to explore upgrades to existing crossings south from Leavenworth County or the creation of a new crossing, with a focus on connecting underserved populations to new job centers south of the river, providing a bike/ped crossing of the river (neither existing bridge crossing has accommodations), and opening up access to parks and recreation.