Searching for east-west connectors

We’ve been exploring different east-west connector routes, and can use some help and input. The goal is to find the best routes for e-bikes today, that can connect to the north-south routes. Those north-south routes connect people to our two largest job centers – Greater Downtown and the Plaza area.

Armour and 35th Street seems like an obvious candidate. The protected bike lane on Armour is excellent, and 35th Street to Benton is a good route without much traffic.

51st Street has some advantages, too, since it doesn’t have a freeway interchange at Bruce R Watkins Drive, However, it has a series of hills that aren’t ideal, and it dead-ends into UMKC, which would require some work-arounds. That’s fine, but we’d like some other opinions on this route.

Riding along Brush Creek, especially from the Plaza to Cleveland is very interesting. It’s not meant to be a higher speed bikeway, but there’s rarely any people walking or running on it today, so there’s little traffic competing for the space. But it also isn’t terribly well-maintained, and there’s trash and homeless people to dodge, as well as some tight curves. Check it out, let us know what you think.


  1. I’d suggest Meyer Boulevard. It connects several of your routes at their southern ends and it’s a pleasant, safe route for the most part.


  2. Cleaver is way faster than the Brush Creek Trail. The key is to take the right lane (I.e. ride right in the middle of it, so cars don’t attempt to pass you in the same lane). I wouldn’t do this on my regular commuter during rush hour, but I would do it on an e-bike. Those things can sustain 16-18 mph easily.


    1. I agree. Cleaver is acceptable. I hate that there is a decent marked bike lane between MLK (Paseo) and Rockhill, and then nothing, even though there is plenty of pavement to continue it to at least Oak.


  3. Between Routes A (near KU Med) and B (near Westport), I like 41st St.(from State Line to Clark St.) and 40th St. (from Clark to Pennsylvania or Washington). The offset at Clark is almost negligible, but do watch for cross traffic there. I find that 40th is a fairly easy place to cross the Trafficway, even though there is no signal — just proceed with plenty of caution.


  4. Independence Ave–I-435, West to City/River Market/Beardsly, West Bottoms. Catch Grand, Main, Wyandotte to all parts south. Independence Ave has more businesses than St. John. Also, you’re on an e-bike, that hill between Jackson and Benton won’t be a sweat and at least 1/2 of it is downhill!
    Paseo Blvd: Independence Ave to 85th street. Hardly any traffic around the clock (yes, I know not east/west per se, but touches 85th Street, 75th Street, 31st Street{who doesn’t like hills? Also, since turns into 40 Hwy going east, will get you all the way to Grain Valley, MO}, 39th Street {again, hills}, 19th Street/Southwest Blvd,
    Truman Road: Accounting for dog legs, you can take Truman Road from downtown KC to Oak Grove, MO. Heckuva east/west connector, IMO.
    12th Street–already established bike route, not many businesses along this corridor (compared to Independence Ave, for example, but goes from Winner Road in the east to to the West Bottoms and touches almost all your north/south routes…


    1. There’s a lot to digest here! St John just has so little traffic, it seems safer than Independence Ave. But I love that street, and will spend some time soon riding it to see if it deserves its own route.
      Paseo/MLK: very good riding! We were focused on approx 10 mile routes out of Downtown, but I’ll bet the southern portion of this boulevard should be added.
      Will take a look at 31st, 39th, etc–seem to have a lot of traffic to be safe enough. But it’s hard to tell until they’ve been ridden on an e-bike many times at all times of day.
      Truman? Certainly wide enough, and not a lot of traffic.
      All good suggestions deserving of consideration. We pledge to update you (via this web site) on what we find.


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