Home / News

KC Water Receives KCIC Sustainability Award

Posted on October 22, 2020

Central Industrial District/West Bottoms Project Selected for Innovation Award

(Kansas City, MO) – Infrastructure improvements don’t always happen underground.  Sometimes they are on the surface and create a beautiful community amenity. KC Water’s Central Industrial District/West Bottoms Green Infrastructure project is a perfect example.

The Kansas City Industrial Council selected KC Water to receive its Innovation Award for the Central Industrial District (CID)/West Bottoms Green Infrastructure project.  This work, located in three areas in the West Bottoms, is a project built as part of the Smart Sewer program and is designed to keep stormwater out of the combined sewer system.

Here are some of the features:

  • Below an underpass near I-670 and Liberty Street, KC Water constructed a large brick permeable paver plaza that features a multi-use event space, a semi-covered meeting place, a flexible parking area, and stormwater tree planters. This area allows rainwater to soak through the ground through an innovative system of authentic fired clay brick permeable pavers.
  • Nearby, at the Liberty Street Green Space, stormwater runoff from rooftops and buildings flows to a bioswale and bioretention area surrounded by park-like landscape features consisting of a trail, a boardwalk system, and native trees, shrubs, and grasses. Additionally, 668 square feet of the project area’s original 100-year-old sett stones (similar in appearance to cobble stones) were re-purposed in the entrance to the new green space.
  • From Wyoming to Mulberry Street underneath the I-70 viaduct, a gravel infiltration system was installed adjacent to Intercity Viaduct Road and the Riverfront Heritage Trail to soak stormwater into the ground. In the same vicinity, an innovative rainwater harvesting system employs two above ground cisterns to capture rainwater from highway decks above to make it available for non-potable water reuse.

“This project will help protect our community’s environment by reducing the amount of stormwater entering our combined sewer system, which will reduce combined sewer overflows,” said KC Water Director Terry Leeds.  “We invest in green infrastructure projects like this one to help our community manage stormwater the way nature intended by capturing and utilizing rainwater where it falls.”

“I would like to thank our design and construction partners for their contributions to this project making Kansas City a better place to live, work, and play,” said KC Water Director Terry Leeds.  “HNTB was the Design Professional and Kissick Construction served as the Contractor.  I would also like to thank our Smart Sewer Program Manager, Burns & McDonnell for their help in guiding this work.”

KC Water received the award during KCIC’s 2020 Sustainability Awards Breakfast Thursday, October 22nd.

For more information, please contact Heather Frierson, Media Relations Coordinator, at, 816-513-0280.


KC Water maintains and operates water treatment and distribution systems, stormwater management systems, and wastewater collection and treatment systems for residential and business customers in Kansas City and for wholesale customers in the Kansas City area.  KC Water is primarily funded by fees charged to customers based on their use or impacts on the three utility systems.

Follow KC Water:  Website · Facebook · Twitter ·  YouTube · Instagram · Nextdoor