May 17, 2017
Last week at Thursday’s City Council Business Session two Councilwomen, Alissia Canady and Katheryn Shields, started a walk-back campaign in an attempt to draw the $8-million dollars pledged in the first round of GO Bond funding away from the shovel-ready Corinthian Hall project and re-direct it to projects that aren’t even on the drawing board yet. The dog is crying foul for a variety of reasons, first and foremost, city funds have already been pledged by name to the museum in the first round which is why Museum supporters voted in favor of that question specifically, new animal shelter notwithstanding.
Secondarily, the Museum project is literally shovel-ready. Strategic planning sessions began back in 2010 with this goal date in mind. Thousands of hours of planning, community engagement and designing have all culminated in the city’s only truly shovel ready project with a groundbreaking date that’s actually within 30 days from today. Walking away from this now shows your lack of commitment to the exciting new dynamic that exists at the Museum.
Lastly and probably most significantly, six Kansas City civic heavyweights (two with roots in Historic Northeast) have signed on to spearhead the capital fundraising campaign to insure the Museum’s ongoing success. Northeast native William Dunn Sr., will serve as Honorary Chair. He along with longtime friends Henry Bloch and Ed Matheny Jr. bring the thunder, while Ollie Gates, Anita Gorman and North Lawn Avenue native Carl J. DiCapo bring the lightning. If one were to combine the civic engagement in years of these powerhouses, the total would easily eclipse the 300-year mark. The commitment of these Kansas City heavyweights to this cause means the Kansas City Museum just jumped into the big leagues in a huge way. Additionally, over $1 million in private funds has already been pledged to the museum project by the R.A. Long Foundation. This dog would like to ask the two dissenting Council members to name another project that’s funded by the GO Bonds, with the exception of the new doggie shelter, that has this amount of planning, this amount of private funds already pledged and is ready to turn dirt within a two-week period of time. It’s okay. We’ll wait.
Note to the honorable Councilwomen, step up, get it funded and prepare to check this project off the list.