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Historic Atchison, Kansas Downtown/Riverfront Development Project. Atchison – est. 1854. Missouri River town 10,232 city population 30 minutes from KCI Airport 20 minutes north of Leavenworth 40 minutes north of Kansas Speedway. How It All Began.

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Historic

Atchison, Kansas

Downtown/Riverfront Development Project


Atchison est 1854
Atchison – est. 1854

  • Missouri River town

  • 10,232 city population

  • 30 minutes from KCI Airport

  • 20 minutes north of Leavenworth

  • 40 minutes north of Kansas Speedway


How It All Began

  • 1996 -Atchison community completed a comprehensive strategic plan

    • Identified the downtown/riverfront area as the #1 priority for development.

    • The area has the greatest concentration of historically, architecturally and culturally significant structures and sites and is the focus of efforts to improve Atchison’s image.


Chamber initiative
Chamber Initiative

  • Formed a Downtown/Riverfront Development Council

  • Received a planning grant

  • Hired an architect/planner

  • Held many public meetings-veterans, Yacht Club, downtown property owners

  • Developed a Downtown/Riverfront Development Master Plan

  • Applied for Community Development Grant


Downtown/Riverfront Development Plan

  • Primary goals of the master plan

    • Extend the retail district to the riverfront

    • Enhance the role of commercial activity

    • Treat the entire area as one unified district

    • Utilize existing historic buildings in the overall redevelopment plan


Commercial Street Corridor Project (Downtown)

Comprehensive Development Grant

  • Injected over $1.5 million in downtown streetscape

  • Implemented facade improvement program

  • Purchased a dilapidated historic structure

  • Purchased key abandoned commercial property

  • Attracted an 80-employee manufacturer


Fa ade program design guidelines

Before……..

Façade Program/Design Guidelines



Riverfront Development Task Force

Block north of Amelia Earhart Bridge




Riverfront Development Task Force

  • Accomplished donation of railroad property (2001)

  • Approved site plan and secured design funding (2002)

  • Initiated construction (2003)

  • Conducted fundraising efforts (2002-2004)





Project Elements

  • Walking/biking path along river

  • Green space and parking area adjacent to walking/biking path

  • Landscaping, trees, etc.






Dedicated June 19, 2004

2004 Summer Events

June 12-20, 2004

July 23-24, 2004

July 3-4, 2004


Huge economic impact
Huge Economic Impact

  • Sesquicentennial

    – 5,000 people

  • Amelia Earhart Festival

    – 50-60,000

  • Lewis & Clark Bicentennial

    – 85-100,000

  • All within a six week period


What’s Next for Riverfront?

  • Designate areas to develop

  • Work with existing and new businesses







Secrets of Our Success

  • Public involvement

  • Good visual aids

  • Collaboration

  • Communication

  • Lots of Humor



Thank You

For additional information please contact:

Glenda Purkis Atchison Area Chamber of Commerce 913.367.2427 or [email protected]

Photography provided by the Atchison Daily Globe and the City of Atchison and, presentation prepared by Steve Wilson, Jr.


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