Editor’s Note: To inform members and interested stakeholders about progress on the implementation of the Imagine Downtown KC Strategic Plan, the Downtown Council of Kansas City provides updates from the quarterly Implementation Committee meetings.
Imagine Downtown KC – Implementation Committee: 1.26.2023
Members of the Imagine Downtown KC 2030 Strategic Plan Implementation team met on Jan. 26, 2023 for the winter quarterly meeting at the Park University Downtown Campus. The meeting unfolded one year after the Imagine plan was launched at the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum.
Implementation chair Jason Parson welcomed 40 committee members and guests to learn about the advantages of a Community Benefits Agreement (CBA) in managing large-scale, community improvement initiatives.
While the discussion was focused on the Terminal Workforce Enhancement Program (TWEP) for the New Terminal Project at KCI Airport, Parson advised the group to consider the CBA model, as a platform for advancing the catalytic projects within the Imagine Downtown KC 2030 Strategic Plan.
Dan Moylan, development director of Edgemoor Infrastructure & Real Estate, and Mark Goodwin, vice president of Clark Construction, began their presentation by defining CBAs as …”contracts between developers and community-based organizations representing residents’ interests.” They stressed the value of “local contracts” shaped by “current needs of the community.”
When developer Edgemoor and design-build partner Clark|Weitz|Clarkson was tapped to lead the development, design, and construction of the $1.5 billion New Single Terminal and Parking at KCI, they promised the New Terminal Project would spur transformative growth for minority- and women-owned businesses and the local workforce. The CBA set out to prove Kansas City had the workforce capacity to get the job done.
The project team set goals for Minority-owned Business Enterprises (MBE), Women-owned Business Enterprises (WBE), and local workforce participation that – according to Moylan and Goodwin – were both ambitious and historic, based on Kansas City’s existing market capacity.
The speakers explained that the TWEP was designed to focus on:
- Supporting the existing workforce
- Building capacity in small, local businesses
- Strengthening KC-based minority and women-owned businesses
“Through innovative procurement strategies and small business capacity building and support programs, the transformation in Kansas City is in full effect.” Goodwin said.
As the KCI New Terminal prepares for arrival later this month, the greater Edgemoor team reported MBE, WBE, and workforce participation goals are on track to be exceeded in every category.
Moylan and Goodwin credited the program’s effectiveness to an innovative Workforce Training Program that was designed “to eliminate barriers and create pathways for Kansas City-area residents to lifelong careers in the construction industry.”
Upon successful completion of a three-week classroom training program, graduates were enrolled in a union pre-apprenticeship program and employed by a subcontractor on the New Terminal Project, where they received hands-on training while contributing to the project’s success.
In total, 200 Workforce Training Program produced:
- 165 graduates completed the three-week classroom program
- 73% male; 27% female
- 48% Black or African American; 35% White; 10% Hispanic or Latino
- 16 graduates fulfilled two sponsorships
- 19 individuals went directly to the retention program
“Graduates have earned more than $6.2 million in wages and benefits and have contributed over 200,000 work hours, as of December 2022,” they said. “Approximately 70% of the graduates remain in the construction industry.”
As of year-end 2022, they reported the following achievements:
- Professional Services
- 20.49% MBE Enterprises (Goal 20%)
- 16.37% WBE Enterprises (Goal 15%)
- Construction Services
- 25.65% MBE Enterprises (Goal 20%)
- 18.53% WBE Enterprises (Goal 15%)
- Project Partners
- 133 M/WBE Project Partners
- 244 KC-area Metro Partners
- 305 Total Project Partners
- Minority/Female Workforce Participation
- 24.09% Minorities (Goal 20%)
- 7.7% Women (Goal 2.75%)
Using the CBA model, Goodwin said they created the TWEP to focus on:
- Supporting the workforce
- Building capacity among small, local businesses
- Strengthening KC-based minority- and women-owned businesses
The Edgemoor-Clark|Weitz|Clarkson joint venture team created the Workforce Training Program in order to eliminate barriers and create pathways for Kansas City area residents to lifelong careers in the construction industry.
Upon successful completion of the three-week classroom training programs, graduates were enrolled in a union pre-apprenticeship program and employed by a subcontractor on the New Terminal Program where they received hands-on training while contributing to the project’s progress.
“Through innovative procurement strategies and small business capacity building and support programs, the transformation in Kansas City is in full effect,” Goodwin added.
As the presentation concluded, several members of the audience spoke up with questions, comments and optimism over incorporating the CBA model into implementation of Imagine Downtown KC goals, transformative projects, and catalytic projects.
Imagine Downtown KC – General Updates
Lynn Carlton, vice chair of implementation, asked committee members for suggestions of topics to be discussed at future meetings. An update on the Jazz Hills affordable housing project was suggested. The project is due for completion within the next 16 months.
Carlton wrapped up the quarterly meeting with mentions of upcoming events of interest for Imagine Downtown KC leaders, including:
Annual Luncheon, Downtown Council: Coming April 14, 2023 to the Loews Kansas City Hotel. Click here to learn more.
Candidate Forum: Candidates for 3rd and 4th City Council districts representing Downtown & Midtown will be featured in a forum from 6-8 p.m. Monday, Feb. 20 at the National WWI Museum and Memorial. The event is co-sponsored by the Downtown Council, Midtown KC Now, and the Citizens Association. Click here to register.
Downtown Ballpark: The Kansas City Royals are planning a community listening session for 5 p.m. Tuesday Jan. 31 at the Midwest Genealogy Center in Independence.
KC Spirit Playbook: A series of public meetings will be held in February to provide opportunities for public feedback on the draft of the city’s new comprehensive plan, the KC Spirit Playbook. City Planning Director Jeff Williams invited committee members to register at this link to confirm attendance at an online meeting. In addition, members may log on to playbook.kcmo.gov to learn more.
South Loop Project: The first public engagement opportunity is planned as an open house meeting from 4:30-6:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 7, at the YMCA Downtown. Visit https://kcsouthloopproject.org/ for more information.
Neighborhood involvement: The Implementation Committee welcomes more representatives from Downtown adjacent neighborhoods. For more information, contact Ann Holliday at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Next quarterly meeting: The next meeting of the Imagine Downtown KC 2030 Implementation Committee will be held in late April/early May. Committee members will receive a save the date email within the next few weeks.