Grime: The NEKC Chamber plans to enhance the Historic Northeast community by reducing graffiti, improving pedestrian access, and creating a stronger sense of place. They aim to do this by designing and painting two murals on the Kansas City Terminal Railroad bridge, which is expected to have a long-lasting impact compared to removing graffiti several times a year. The project is designed to reduce blight and increase safety. The NEKC Chamber sponsors a summer mural program each year, which has been successful in reducing graffiti in the area, improving property values, and drawing visitors into Northeast Kansas City.

Several partners and stakeholders are involved in this project, including the city’s Public Works Department, the Planning & Development Department, the City Manager’s Office, the Northeast Chamber, the Indian Mound and  Sheffield Neighborhood associations, the Independence Avenue CID, and a number of property owners along Independence Avenue. 

The project is slated to be completed within 12 months, including the selection of artists, mural design and application, and installing new, overhead lighting at the ever infamous Independence Avenue Bridge.

Crime: Laura Cardwell, the CID’s Team Resource Manager, has recently become a certified Harm Reduction Specialist through certification training offered by the Independence Avenue Community Improvement District (CID). Part of the CID’s mission is  to enhance the safety along the Independence Avenue International Marketplace corridor. Through Cardwell’s certification and ongoing training, new partnerships and collaborations have been established that have positively enhanced the Avenue business community. One of those is a partnership with 

Spalitto’s Pharmacy where free, life saving Narcan is available to anyone who is in need. Additionally, partnerships with Healing House, Care Beyond the Blvd, and Benilde Hall have also ushered in positive results.

Most recently, Titan Security, Avenue Angels have just completed Narcan administration certification as they continue their work with the Kansas City, MO Police Department’s Community Engagement Officers to assist Narcan usage in case of emergencies. The CID’s collaboration with external agencies and the installation of the Narcan dispenser at Spalitto’s Pharmacy are vital steps toward improving the community and dealing with addiction-related issues.

Chime: Did you know that the Independence Avenue CID offers a range of financial incentives to its member businesses? This includes the Northeast Chamber of Commerce Facade Rebate Program. As part of this program, chamber member businesses can apply for funds to match the improvements they make to the front of their building facade. These matching beautification rebate funds are designed to create a more cohesive look for the Avenue’s business community while also serving as an effective economic development tool that encourages participation from other businesses.

This, in turn, helps to enhance the look of the International Marketplace along the Avenue corridor. Additionally, the CID Storefront Rebate Program offers a matching rebate of up to $5,000 for facade improvements.