Logistics Park Kansas City: Benefiting an entire region
It seems like every so often a discussion reignites about the continued growth of Logistics Park Kansas City (LPKC) and the perceived positives and negatives associated with it. Even though fringe arguments change slightly the discussion always revolves around the same talking points. Throughout it all there is always a critical point that seems to get lost in the noise: Logistics Park Kansas City benefits more than just a single community; it benefits an entire region.
There is no denying the fact that Edgerton, Kansas, home to Logistics Park Kansas City, has benefited greatly from the addition of LPKC. They have seen changes and improvements that would not have been possible in a lifetime without the addition of this project. Over the last several years, local tax rates have dropped considerably, there has been massive investment into road infrastructure around the community improving public health and safety along with quality of life, and most importantly an influx of jobs with a higher average salary than the median income of the community. And while all these things are important, it pales in comparison to the benefits provided to the entire region.
Since the opening of LPKC in 2013, this project has been responsible for the creation of over 12,000 direct and indirect jobs. These are quality jobs with average wages over $40,000 a year with benefits. In 2020 when the COVID pandemic caused businesses across the region to close and local job losses to mount, companies located at LPKC added hundreds of job opportunities providing a lifeline for many people who had been adversely affected by the pandemic.
In addition, the local Gardner-Edgerton School district receives almost $1 million in tax revenue each year from LPKC. While that number is staggering, what is more important is it will continue to rise in the years ahead. This is money that is not only being invested into multiple communities, it is money that is being invested into the future generations of families across the region.
LPKC has also led to increased development and growth in communities outside of Edgerton. Neighboring communities have seen the development of hotels, grocery stores, gas stations, as well as single-family and multi-family housing. Communities in counties across the region have begun developing their own industrial parks in hopes of capitalizing on the increased focus of the KC region by various industries because of the transportation benefits provided by LPKC. In short, even though there has been over $1 billion in private investment in Edgerton, that is only a small portion of the total amount of investment the region has seen because of the addition and continued growth of LPKC.
Even with the reality of all these benefits you still always have a small group of people opposed to change. These are the people who oppose development in general. It would not matter if it were warehouses, apartments, commercial or retail. “Not in my back yard” they yell. The same people that say they live where they do because they do not want people telling them what they can and can’t do on their property are now trying to tell others what they can and can’t do on theirs. It is also the same group of people that utilize the new roads built, shop at the new stores, get gas at the new facilities and have UPS deliver everything they have ordered online in two days or less.
The Kansas City region is where it is today partly because the addition and growth of Logistics Park Kansas City. It has contributed to the metro’s success just as much in recent years as the Chiefs, Royals, Westport and Plaza. And while it is located in Edgerton it is indisputable that LPKC benefits more than a single community, it benefits the entire Kansas City region.