Before the Leawood City Council approves public tax support for the Ranchmart redevelopment project to the tune of $13 million, it should negotiate with the developers to return something in exchange for the public investment. (Feb. 19, KansasCity.com, “Cost to update Leawood’s Ranchmart center: $47 million. Developers ask for incentives”)
I suggest that space within the new development be set aside for a community center for north Leawood. The space could serve a variety of purposes, including as a place for kids to go after school, a game room for all ages, a little free library (bring one, take one), a meeting room for family reunions and anniversaries and much more.
An online calendar accessible to residents could be set up at minimal expense to manage the use of the center. A small fraction of the tax support could be set aside for operating costs.
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Leawood residents, please contact your council representative and Mayor Peggy Dunn to voice your support. We can make it happen.
Our schools have had a lot of snow days this winter, and this has caused students to miss lots of minutes they need to graduate. But with one easy schedule change, this problem could disappear: School districts should add five or 10 minutes to the start and end of each day’s schedule.
This would feel like nothing to the students but would add an hour or more every week, eventually adding up to the few days we need to make up. Students would hardly notice it.