Planning & Urban Design

Urban Planning & Land Use

Planning and Urban Design’s mission is to enhance the long-term value and livability of Wyandotte County through the design of a regenerative community that is socially just, economically accessible, culturally diverse and environmentally sustainable. We do this by improving the built, social and cultural environments through planning, development, and enforcement efforts, as well as facilitating government agencies, supporting public officials and empowering constituents to achieve a high quality of life for all.

Are you curious about the work we do in the Department of Planning + Urban Design? Our role within the Unified Government may seem obscure at first, which is why one of our goals is to demystify our field. Follow the links below to see a brief overview of the work we do on your behalf. 

Note: All Board of Zoning Appeals, City Planning Commission, Landmarks Commission, Subcommittees (Landmarks, Armourdale Master Plan, etc.) and meetings with staff are only virtual until further notice (no in-person meetings).

Attention: City Landmarks Commission Public Hearing Procedures for November 1, 2021(PDF, 66KB)

Attention: Board of Zoning Appeals/City Planning Commission Public Hearing Procedures for October 11, 2021(PDF, 143KB)

“Back to Business” COVID-19 Emergency Resolutions and Ordinances

To help businesses stay open while allowing for social distancing, the Department of Planning and Urban Design has been working across the Unified Government to allow your business to better utilize sidewalks, setbacks and off-street surplus parking spaces for dining and retail sales. Specifically, we encourage each parcel to repurpose one of your on-street parking spaces, if available, to be converted into a “parklet”. Parklets transform curbside parking into vibrant community space (See COVID-19 Design Standards Guide below). Additionally, the Board of Commissioners (BOC) have expanded where farmer’s markets and mobile vendors (i.e. food trucks, push carts, and mobile markets) are allowed to operate by-right. Additionally, residential streets can now register with Livable Neighborhoods to designate themselves as “Open Streets” in order to minimize through traffic and provide a safer place for outdoor recreation.

Unless extended by the BOC, all of the below emergency ordinances expire at 11:59PM on December 31, 2020.

The BOC will next consider the temporary closure of residential streets to allow neighborhoods to safely utilize their public right-of-ways for outdoor recreation while social distancing. Stay tuned for more.

Complete Streets

The purpose of Unified Government’s Complete Streets Ordinance is to accommodate all road users equally by realizing a balanced road and trail network that safely moves people, not just vehicles. Furthermore, this ordinance directs Staff to consistently plan, design, construct, operate, and maintain streets to accommodate all road users, including, but not limited to, pedestrians, bicyclists, public transit riders, motorists, emergency responders, and freight and commercial drivers, and people of all ages and abilities, including children, families, older adults, and individuals with disabilities.

With significant community input and support, the new Complete Streets Ordinance, which officially codifies the concept in all new public and private infrastructure projects within the public right of way, is a follow-up to the 2011 Complete Streets Resolution (see below). These planning, design and civil engineering best practices are currently and will continue to be integrated into the improvement of the public realm citywide.

Ongoing Plans and Projects

Recently Adopted Plans and Projects

Airbnb and Short Term Rentals

Are you interested in hosting guests with Airbnb, VRBO, or similar service? These activities are a commercial use and require a special use permit. Current hosts should apply immediately. Read more about short term rentals here.(PDF, 214KB)

The Blog

Our blog is where we share our latest thoughts on urban planning through the unique lens of Wyandotte County-Kansas City, Kansas.  Check it out and join the conversation in the comments.

Featured Links

Encode Plus - Online Zoning Code and Mapping Platform

Department Head

Director: Gunnar Hand, AICP