Anyone driving through Lenexa in recent years might have noticed it no longer abruptly ends when you reach Interstate 435 on the city’s west side.
The Johnson County city used to sit snugly between I-35 to the east and I-435 to the west with a smattering of housing developments to the west of there, but city planners 20 years ago saw the growth the community was experiencing and were making plans then on how to adapt to that expansion.
Part of that plan was fulfilled Monday with the opening of the Lenexa civic campus.
The new campus is just west of I-435 in the 17000 block of West 87th Street. The 5-acre facility is now home to the Lenexa City Hall, a new 100,000-square-foot recreation center, a 250-seat public forum, an art gallery and a 500-spot parking garage. The space is also home to a public market and a branch of Park University, and there are plans to build a new library at the site.
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Moving City Hall to the west puts the offices for essential government services closer to the center of the city instead of near its eastern border. City Hall was formerly at 12350 West 87th St.
One of the features of the recreation center is an indoor track that has floor-to-ceiling windows that give patrons a 360-degree view of their outdoor surroundings.
The $75 million project was funded with a 3/8-cent sales tax voters adopted in 2008 and with capital improvement funds and revenue from leasable space.