It sounds quaint now, but not so many years ago, house hunters began their search by taking a spin through the newspaper want ads. They’d circle in red the listings that looked promising, hop in the car and take a look.
No virtual tours beforehand. No GPS to get you there.
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Because inertia rules our lives, my husband and I bought our last house nearly 35 years ago. But I clearly remember some of the headings in the real estate section:
North of St. John.
West of Troost.
East of Troost.
Having grown up in a different part of town, I knew nothing back then about St. John Avenue.
But I recognized the code implicit in the other two listings. Troost Avenue was Kansas City’s racial dividing line, and that had a dramatic effect on the residential real estate market.
Today, the divisions aren’t so sharp, and that’s the theme of this week’s cover story in the 816 newsmagazine.
816 asked writer Kimberly Winter Stern to spend some time on the thoroughfare and give us a sense of what is happening there.
It’s an eclectic corridor, with many different kinds of people. She found stretches of vibrant businesses, and some areas still waiting for an economic rebound. She found problems, but she also found hope.
We think you will be enlightened by her travelogue and the accompanying photos by The Star’s talented photographers.