Kansas City, Missouri (KCMO), is located in northwestern Missouri, at the junction of the Missouri and Kansas rivers. It is home to 470,000 people (2014 est.) and covers 315 square miles. The city bills itself as the country’s “most centrally located” major metro, within a day’s drive of 55 million people. With more than 200 fountains, second only to Rome, Kansas City is nicknamed “City of Fountains.”
Kansas City History
According to city records, the first settler of Kansas City was a Frenchman, who arrived in 1821 and set up a trading post. Several other French families joined the settlement and, over time, the community grew into a town. It officially became incorporated as the Town of Kansas in 1850, named for the Kansa tribe of native Americans who inhabited the area. Today, after nearly two centuries of growth and annexations, the city occupies over 300 square miles and touches four counties: Cass, Clay, Jackson and Platte.
Kansas City Weather
Kansas City, MO, sits at 923 ft. above sea level on the northern edge of the humid subtropical zone. It sees pretty big swings in temperatures throughout the year; summers are generally hot and humid, and winters are cold. Among U.S. states, Kansas City is average for rainfall (37 inches per year). The comfort index (34) is below the U.S. average (44).
Kansas City Transportation
Kansas City, Missouri bills itself as the country’s most accessible big city, with air (400 daily flights to 43 destinations) and highway connections that make it easy to get to and from the city. You have multiple options for getting around the community: autos (rental cars and taxis), a well-developed bus system, and event a free public streetcar line downtown. Workers enjoy an average commute of under 22 minutes.
Cost of Living in Kansas City
How much will you spend on living in Kansas City? The median household income (2010-2014) is $45,376. However, nearly one in five people are living below the threshold for poverty. Below are a couple of resources you can use to estimate your living expense.
Kansas City Schools
The North Kansas City Schools system serves approximately 19,400 students in the Kansas City area (K through high school), while the Kansas City Public Schools system serves nearly 17,000 students. An online search finds 38 colleges and universities in Kansas City, including community colleges as well as trade and technical institutes. Kansas City is home to University of Missouri-Kansas City (enrollment 16,000) and the Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences.
Kansas City Hospitals
There are 46 hospitals within 30 miles of Kansas City. Among some of the more prominent names are: University of Kansas Hospital, with 713 beds, ranked nationally in 12 adult specialties. Saint Luke’s Health System (10 locations in the region); and North Kansas City Hospital (451 beds and a Level III neonatal intensive care unit).
Kansas City Real Estate
As of 2010, there were 221,860 homes and apartments in Kansas City, Missouri. The median value of owner-occupied housing units (2010-2014) is approximately $133,000. For those with a mortgage, the median monthly owner costs are $1,341. For apartment dwellers, the median gross rent expense is $796.
Kansas City Hotels
B&Bs, hotels, extended stay suites, RV Parks . . . whether for business or pleasure, and for any budget, you’ll find lots of lodging options. There are literally hundreds of properties to choose from for your stay in Kansas City, Missouri. You can even connect to the city’s storied past at one its grand historic hotels—such as the Hilton President, a AAA four-diamond property.
Restaurants in Kansas City
Kansas City is a midwestern paradise for foodies. Among the many flavorful dishes you can experience, perhaps the most famous is Kansas City barbecue. With more than 100 barbecue eateries, Kansas City claims the title as the “Barbecue Capital of the World.” If you enjoy specialty beers, make time for a visit to Boulevard Brewing Company, the largest specialty brewery in the Midwest.
Things to Do in Kansas City
Kansas City is truly a top destination for the good things in life. You’ll find scrumptious, varied cuisine; uniquely captivating museums; a vibrant jazz music scene; a thriving arts community; and an eclectic mix of shops. It’s no wonder the city attracts 24 million visitors a year. If you go, be sure to check out the downtown, glowing in the wake of a $6.5 billion revitalization. Take in the performing arts (ballet, opera, and symphony) or a professional sports contest (football, baseball, soccer, racing).