In 2019 and 2020, Strong Towns partnered with data analytics firm Urban3 for an ongoing research endeavor in Kansas City, Missouri, thanks to funding from the Enid & Crosby Kemper Foundation. The essays in this book, written by Charles Marohn and Strong Towns Senior Editor, Daniel Herriges, make use of Urban3’s groundbreaking analyses and illustrations to explain Kansas City’s risky all-in approach to the suburban development experiment, its misguided investment in urban freeways and parking lots, its harmful history of redlining, and more. These chapters also point to a more financially responsible approach that focuses on local, incremental steps toward change.
We are not telling the story of Kansas City because it is especially unique or unusual. Rather, it is a case study—one that every city can learn from.