The Blue Valley Industrial Association will celebrate its 100th anniversary in 2020, underscoring the Blue River Valley Industrial Corridor’s (BRVIC) continuous operation as a business and employment region over many generations. The area’s experience of recent decades, however, has been of disinvestment, high unemployment and limited physical and economic mobility.

It is an EDCKC economic development initiative to lead a deliberate, multi-year, jobs-based program to control, prepare and incent major new job sites to attract industries and companies that will engage with and assist in developing a neighborhood-centered workforce.

A further objective is to reconceive and repurpose underused, environmentally contaminated sites into a coherent urban industrial master plan strategy tailored to the region’s target industries.

The economic strategy of this 4,600-acre area – straddling the Little Blue River from the Missouri River downtown to just south of I-435 and I-70 – has four pillars:

  1. Target investment
    • Prioritize and fund infrastructure needs to unlock sites’ development potential, from streetscape improvements to reconstruction of Front Street and the extension of Manchester Trafficway.
    • Assemble, acquire and clean underused sites so they are development-ready.
  2. Mitigate development risk
    • Develop incentives unique to the area to offset the Corridor’s market disadvantages.
    • Control costs.
  3. Enhance and promote
    • Carry out early efforts to improve the appearance of the BRVIC in lighting, streetscape, developing the areas green assets to create a new appreciation of the area.
    • Launch strategic communications to help raise awareness and create positive perceptions.
  4. Target industries
    • Identify and support the development of industry clusters such as animal health, food and advanced manufacturing.

Completed:
  • $300 million Blue River Valley flood control project
  • EDCKC secured a $100,000 U.S. Economic Development Administration planning grant to develop an economic strategy for the Blue River Valley Industrial Corridor.
    • Established Advisory Committee, retained a consultant and completed comprehensive economic strategy for the Blue Valley Industrial Corridor. Consultant team led by HRA Advisors

      Steering Committee

      • Andrew Bracker, City of Kansas City, Missouri
      • Mickey Cruse, City of Kansas City, Missouri
      • Jeremy Davis, Metropolitan Community College – Kansas City, Missouri
      • John Debauche, City of Kansas City, Missouri
      • John Engelmann, Kansas City Power & Light
      • Greg Flisram, Economic Development Corporation of Kansas City, Missouri
      • Chris Gutierrez, Kansas City SmartPort
      • Shawn Lauby, KC Terminal Railway
      • Quinton Lucas, City Council, Kansas City, Missouri
      • Bob Langenkamp, Economic Development Corporation of Kansas City, Missouri
      • Clyde McQueen, Full Employment Council
      • John Patrick, Clay & Baily Manufacturing Company
      • Joe Perry, Port KC
      • Chris Ross, Custom Truck
      • Bob Stork, Blue Valley Neighborhood Association
      • John M. Sweeney, Jr., Jackson County, Missouri
      • Kerrie Tyndall, City of Kansas City, Missouri
      • Dwayne Williams, Twelfth Street Heritage Development Corporation

Underway:
  • $250,000 U.S. Economic Development Administration grant to repair failed water infrastructure.
  • Incentives unique to the East Side, including the Blue River Valley Industrial Corridor, drafted by EDCKC were introduced by Councilman Scott Taylor in late 2017.
  • Assembling parcels. Currently working with the City of Kansas City, Missouri, water department to transfer surplus properties.
  • Raising an urban industrial redevelopment fund as a land bank to strategically acquire, clean and assemble parcels so they are development-ready.

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