Museum launches strategic planning initiative

By Michael Bushnell
Northeast News
November 25, 2015

KANSAS CITY, Missouri — A packed house was on hand at the Kansas City Museum last week to begin the arduous process of developing a strategic plan.

In conjunction with the ongoing revitalization initiatives currently under way in the Historic Northeast community, the Kansas City Museum’s strategic planning will be based on, not only the 2009-2010 plan developed by community leaders and stakeholders, but also, the changing vision and mission of a variety of museums across the country.

Museum Executive Director Anna Marie Tutera said they need to reach out to major foundations and donor institutions, like the Ford Family Foundation or the Kresge Foundation.

“This is a massive restoration project with huge potential and we really need to start thinking beyond our local borders in terms of funding,” Tutera said.

The meeting was attended by over 100 people, including representatives from Mayor Sly James’ office, City Council members, and County Legislators. Manny Abarca, Indian Mound Neighborhood Association Secretary and Community Affairs Liaison for Congressman Emanuel Cleaver’s office, said it was refreshing to see the community engaging, “in the direction and leadership fostered by Anna Marie and the Parks Board.”

“We’re genuinely excited for the future of the Kansas City Museum and its developing role in the community,” said Abarca.

During the meeting, attendees were asked to submit ideas for what the museum’s role should be in the coming years. Ideas ranged from offering rentable space on the first floor to the museum offering culinary classes and developing a fresh food corridor in Northeast. One of the higher priority items was developing the museum as a community gathering space, as well as being developed as an educational institution showcasing the region’s history. The city’s Parks and Recreation Department and Museum staff estimate that the new plan will be rolled out late in the Spring of 2016.

The next meeting will be held from 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 9, in Corinthian Hall at the Kansas City Museum 3218 Gladstone Blvd. This open house will go over the preliminary design and space planning of the museum. At this meeting, the museum’s architects, International Architects Atelier, will review concepts and strategies the museum plans to use, enhance, and expand upon from previous planning documents; i.e. gallery space, café, store, and private rental space. They will also review new concepts that will make the museum a destination, provide revenue, and address the needed form and functionality of the museum; i.e. administrative offices, collections storage and facilities, and parking. Light refreshments and beverages will be provided, as well as Spanish translators. If you’d like to attend the next open house, please RSVP to Anna Marie Tutera at (816) 513-7568 and anna.tutera@kcmo.org.

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