Johnson County Transit recognizes the need to continue expanding transportation options in Johnson County and the Kansas City region. Under the guidance of the Johnson County Transportation Council, JCT conducts planning projects to develop strategies for expanding transit service and infrastructure as funding becomes available.
Recent planning activities have led to the successful implementation of The JO Xpress and Bus-on-Shoulder service in the I-35 corridor, The JO Connex enhanced bus route in the Metcalf and Shawnee Mission Parkway corridor, and a variety of transit station and Park & Ride improvements such as the new Mission Transit Center. JCT also participates in regional transportation planning activities as well as land use and transportation studies conducted by local municipalities. In these processes, JCT promotes the creation of Complete Streets, transit-oriented and sustainable development patterns, and expanding multimodal transportation options throughout the region.
JCT Strategic Plan
The Strategic Plan was developed jointly by the Johnson County Transportation Council (JCTC) and the staff of Johnson County Transit. The plan is a living document, updated to reflect current realities and changing demographics. Most recently updated in 2011, the plan presents near, medium, and long-term strategies to address the demands for transit in Johnson County. JCT is currently planning an update of the plan, in coordination with JCTC.
START Final Report
START final report and discussion were presented to the Board of County Commissioners in 2011.
The taskforce was charged with:
- Studying the county’s Transit Strategic Plan
- Evaluating current service options, both within the county and metro links
- Presenting recommendations on future public transportation strategies, including both short-term and long-term financing options for a comprehensive county-wide transit system
Regional Transportation Planning Framework
Johnson County Transit participates in a variety of regional transportation planning efforts, and conducts project planning in accordance with this regional framework. JCT coordinates with the Mid-America Regional Council (MARC), the Kansas City Area Transportation Authority (KCATA), Unified Government Transit (UG Transit), and local municipalities on these efforts.
Transportation Outlook 2040 –MARC
Adopted in 2010, Transportation Outlook 2040 is the long-range transportation plan that guides how the Kansas City region will manage, operate and invest in its multimodal transportation system over the next 30 years.
Smart Moves Regional Transit Vision – MARC
Originally developed in 2002 and updated in 2008, Smart Moves describes how transit should serve the Kansas City metropolitan area in the years and decades ahead. The Smart Moves vision expands on current transit routes and facilities, and recommends existing and new service types, vehicles and facilities to meet local and regional needs.
A three-phased implementation plan based on Smart Moves is currently being conducted by MARC, JCT, KCATA, and UG Transit.
- Regional Transit Implementation Plan Phase I: Urban Corridors (completed)
- Regional Transit Implementation Plan Phase II: Commuter Corridors (in progress)
- Regional Transit Implementation Plan Phase III: Integration (in progress)
Completed Plans and Studies
The following projects have been completed and now serve as a guide for improving and expanding transit service in Johnson County and the Kansas City region.
KU Medical Center Area Planning Study (2012)
Conducted in partnership with a variety of regional partners and municipalities, this study recommended near and long-term infrastructure and transit service improvements in the area of the University of Kansas Medical Center in Kansas City, Kansas. The plan includes attention to The JO Route 667 and to cities in northeast Johnson County. Routes operated by The Kansas City Area Transportation Authority (KCATA) and Unified Government Transit (UGT) are also analyzed in detail.
Link to document (5 Mb)
Metcalf-Shawnee Mission Parkway Alternatives Analysis (2011)
This Alternatives Analysis was performed to assess the trade-offs in costs, benefits, and impacts of different transit modes that would provide enhanced transit service in the Metcalf Avenue and Shawnee Mission Parkway corridors. Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) operating in mixed traffic was chosen as the Locally Preferred Alternative (LPA). The Alternatives Analysis recommends a phased approach to expanding service on the corridor.
Link to Executive Summary (1 Mb)
Call for full document (58 Mb)
Metcalf-Shawnee Mission Parkway Transit Planning Study (2009)
This study analyzed and presented options to evolve transit service along the Metcalf Avenue and Shawnee Mission Parkway corridors in the context as presented in Vision Metcalf, the West Gateway Vision Plan, and the East Gateway Redevelopment Plan. This study was a collaborative effort by Johnson County Transit (JCT), the City of Mission, Kansas, and the City of Overland Park, Kansas.
The results of this study led to this corridor being selected, along with other transit corridors in the region, for $10.7 million in federal funding through the Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) Grant program. TIGER funded a variety of transit and pedestrian infrastructure improvements in Overland Park, Mission, and Roeland Park that were completed in 2013.
Link to Executive Summary (11 Mb)
Link to full document (1 Mb)
I-35 Fixed Guideway Phased Implementation Plan (2009)
This study expanded on the Alternatives Analysis and provided the basis for implementing Bus-on-Shoulder service in the I-35 corridor. Due to the guidance provided by this plan, The JO Xpress began operation in January 2012, which includes bus-on-shoulder operation on portions of I-35 in Johnson County.
Link to Executive Summary
Link to full document (1.7 Mb)
I-35 Fixed Guideway Corridor Alternatives Analysis (2008)
This study evaluated transit options in the I-35 corridor including commuter rail, which was determined to not be a viable option because of high cost and a low ridership estimate. Bus Rapid Transit using lower cost shoulder running was found to have a significantly higher ridership potential and appeared to be a viable alternative. The BRT alternative would operate on I-35 and would be express in nature, but would include priority treatment such as the ability to operate on the freeway shoulders.
Link to Executive Summary
Link to full document (10 Mb)
JCT is currently participating in the following planning efforts in the Kansas City region.
MARC Planning Sustainable Places
JCT is actively involved in studies being conducted by the cities of Shawnee and Merriam to plan for improved connectivity and future development at important activity nodes on Shawnee Mission Parkway.
City of Shawnee – Community Connections Nieman Road: http://www.cityofshawnee.org/Web/ShawneeCMS.nsf/vwContent/A8F57EF61D47866586257C6A005778A5?OpenDocument
City of Merriam – Shawnee Mission Parkway Corridor Plan: http://www.merriam.org/index.aspx?NID=500
Basic Passenger Infrastructure Improvements
JCT has received federal grant funding through the Bus Livability program to improve transit infrastructure throughout the county. With a focus on high-priority transit corridors identified in the JCT Strategic Plan, JCT is developing plans for improved transit stations at locations throughout Johnson County. More information will be provided as specific locations and improvements are identified.
I-70 Corridor Transit Feasibility Study
JCT is on the Advisory Committee of a team led by KDOT that is reviewing the feasibility of express transit service on the I-70 corridor from Kansas City to Topeka, including Johnson County and Lawrence. This study is expected to be completed in early 2014. The study will consider the position of the K-10 Connector within the study area and potentially recommend future connecting services that will improve mobility throughout the region.
Other Regional Projects
JCT assists with other plans and studies in the region as needed, and also supports many other transit initiatives that will improve mobility in the Kansas City region. These projects include:
- Kansas City Streetcar Starter Line
- Kansas City Streetcar Phase II Planning
- KCATA Prospect MAX Study
- State Avenue Connex
- Link For Care