Pedestrian accidents increasing in Midtown

linwood and main

Half of eight intersections in the entire Kansas City region with the most pedestrian accidents are in or near Midtown, an expert reported Wednesday.

Stephen Lachky, transportation planner with the Mid-America Regional Council, reported that to the city council public safety committee.

The findings are associated with a new study of pedestrian accidents in 13 counties in the metropolitan area.

Seven of the eight worst intersections for those accidents are in Kansas City, where city experts are studying those intersections for a June report on them, Lachky said.

The seven city intersections that had four or more pedestrian accidents in the last four years:

  • Main Street and Linwood Boulevard, near Costco and Home Depot along Main.
  • Troost Avenue and 39th Street.
  • Troost Avenue and Meyer Boulevard.
  • Gregory Boulevard and U.S. Highway 71.
  • Grand Boulevard and 14th Street, by the west side of the Sprint Center.
  • Independence Avenue and Monroe Avenue, near the Apple Market grocery store along Independence Avenue.

The broad pedestrian study came after officials last year reported that all categories for fatal and disabling injuries declined except for pedestrian accidents. The average number of those increased more than 13 percent for the period from 2006 to 2010.

The new pedestrian study found they happen most in busy urban areas during the day. The main cause is distraction either on the part of the driver, the pedestrian or both, Lachky said.

People use cell phones, read books, listen to music and more, he said, and bad things happen.

More education would help, he said, and he showed public awareness posters other cities put at places like bus stops.

One features a man with tire marks on his face. Another shows a man’s shoes with the caption, “LOOK OUT BEFORE YOU STEP OUT.”


  1. Carol Bates says:

    There are 2 simple reasons that there are so many accidents:
    1- Tailgating – people in KC are the worst offenders.

    2- Rude drivers , they would run you over rather than slow down to let someone merge into their lane.

    Terrible drivers in KC – worse than California, or Mass.

  2. Pam Gilford says:

    Also just plain driving too fast on narrow urban streets

  3. Mary Byrne says:

    Pedestrians have some blame. Many ignore the lights on 39th street. My number one pet peeve is people ignoring traffic rules. I don’t experience much tailgating but I don’t go very far from home, either. The worst is State Line going north to SW Blvd. I just pull over and let them pass.

  4. Elise says:

    Drivers don’t seem to remember or care — it is THE LAW to stop for a pedestrian in a crosswalk. This is a problem particularly in the Plaza area. It forces peds to cross at random places in the street, when they can because traffic is stopped. I’d love to see some drivers busted for not yielding to pedestrians in the crosswalk.

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