KDOT to provide U.S. 69 expansion project updates at virtual public meeting tonight

The Kansas Department of Transportation, along with the Kansas Turnpike Authority and the city of Overland Park, will hold a virtual public meeting from 5 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 20, to update the public on the U.S. 69 expansion project.

Initiated last fall, the project is studying how best to reduce congestion along U.S. 69 between 103rd and 179th streets, according to officials. This project is in Johnson County.

At the virtual public meeting, project team members will discuss the alternatives considered so far including improving transit, increasing technology and using other strategies.

They also will explain why adding capacity – either non-tolled, general-purpose lanes or express toll lanes – best meet the project’s purpose and need based on the study team’s analysis. After the presentation, attendees may submit comments and questions.

To join the live virtual meeting, members of the public may visit the project website, www.69express.org, and follow links at the time of the event.

In addition to the virtual public meeting, a virtual open house will be available on www.69express.org from April 16 to 30.

A link on the home page – www.69express.org/public-information-meetings/ – will direct people to the virtual open house, where they can view project materials. Participants also can ask questions and provide comments through an online form that goes directly to the project team. The open house will provide the same information covered in the live public meeting.

Results from a survey and focus groups conducted in early 2021, as well as a comparison of the impacts of the tolled and non-tolled alternatives and next steps in the project schedule, will be available.

Anyone who requires special assistance or accommodations to attend the meeting or open house, would like printed copies of the meeting materials or needs more information, contact Kelsey Heavin at (816) 527-2468 or info@69express.org.

The U.S. 69 corridor is the busiest four-lane highway in Kansas, with heavy congestion during rush hours and at other times. Previous studies indicate that U.S. 69 congestion will increase significantly in the future as Overland Park grows to the south, with peak travel times projected to triple by 2040.

Project updates by clicking the News link on the website home page, following the project’s Facebook and Twitter pages and subscribing to the Project’s electronic newsletter. The Feedback section of the website also provides a link to a comment form.

KCKCC’s Terrell, Ramos pitch back-to-back shutouts

by Alan Hoskins, KCKCC sports information

Chase Terrell and Gabriel Ramos accomplished a rare feat in Kansas City Kansas Community College history Monday – back-to-back shutout pitching performances.

A sophomore from Bonner Springs, Terrell gave up just four singles in a 6-0 opening game win over Labette. Ramos did him one better, allowing only three hits in a 2-0 nightcap win. Both games went seven innings. While no such records are kept, the last known Blue Devil double shutout was pitched 40 years ago by Joe Beggs, who pitched both games of 5-inning 10-0 wins over Labette.

The wins kept KCKCC (11-7) a game ahead of Coffeyville (10-8) in the race for third place in the Jayhawk Conference. At Neosho County in Chanute Thursday, the Blue Devils are home against the Panthers Saturday. Both doubleheaders start at 1 p.m.

Terrell allowed no runner past second base in the opener. He struck out 10, walked one and retired 12 of the last 14 Cardinals he faced. The four Blue Devils in the middle of the batting order each had two hits – Caleb Adams, Ray Paniauga, Brendyn Bard and Palmer Hutchinson.

Beau Grable delivered the big blow for the Blue Devils, lashing a two-run double following a single by Bard and double by Hutchinson for a 2-0 lead in the second. Caleb Brown’s sacrifice fly following hits by Paniagua, Bard and Hutchinson made it 3-0 in the third and the Blue Devils added two more runs one just one hit in the fifth, a single by Adams.

Ramos (2-2) allowed only two Cardinals to reach base the first six innings, striking out eight, walking none and hitting one. During one stretch, he retired 11 hitters in a row before Labette’s third hit and a hit batsman in the seventh.

The Blue Devils scored the only run they needed in the first. Cole Silbowski led off with a single and scored on Caleb Adams’ one out double. Silbowski also had two doubles to pace a 7-hit attack. The Blue Devils’ second run came in the third on a walk, hit batsman and Hutchinson’s two-out single.

Free haircuts offered for kids April 25

The Jegna Klub will offer free haircuts, with hot food, food boxes, gently used shoes, clothes and giveaways from noon to 6 p.m. Sunday, April 25, at 221 N. 18th St., Kansas City, Kansas.

The event is for up to 150 kindergarten through 12th grade students, according to Moses Wyatt Jr., founder of the Jegna Klub. There will be social distancing and masks required at the event.

The One Touch Maintenance Office at 221 N. 18th St., will be the host of the event. Licensed barbers will give the haircuts.

“We want to be the change we wish to see in our community,” Wyatt said.

Time spent building g positive relationships will youth will show them that people understand, care and are here for them, according to Wyatt. It will help motivate them to achieve. When a child feels good about his or her appearance and grooming, it boosts their self-esteem, which in turn has a uniquely positive effect on the development and educational success of a child, according to Wyatt.

Participating barbershops include Tino’s Chop Shop, Purple Label, the Crown Suite and Unlimited Trends.

Community partners in the event include One Touch Building Maintenance, Dotte Mobile Grocer, WAW Trucking Solutions, Open Arms, Newt’s Unique Kitchen, R&R Paseo Grill, Premium Waters, P.R.I.D.E., BPOA, Taste of Flavor, Helping Hands and Bridge of Hope.

The previous two Jegna Klub haircutting events provided 175 haircuts, 250 hot meals, 175 sandwiches and chips, 238 pairs of shoes, 147 pairs of socks, 459 articles of clothing, 45 food boxes and 172 food baskets, according to Wyatt.

For more information on the event, call 913-721-6570.