Douglas Ave. Underpass
Plans and funding have been approved for $2.1 million of renovations to the Douglas Avenue Underpass. Improvements include addressing structural issues, painting the understructure, adding creative lighting and steps to mitigate the pigeons. Estimated completion is spring 2018, just in time to welcome locals and visitors to our Downtown during the NCAA basketball tournament.
Background Information - Plans completed 2014
Downtown Wichita was awarded $75,000 from the Knight Foundation Fund at the Wichita Community Foundation to derive design concepts to revitalize the historic Douglas Avenue underpass from its current status into an inviting Downtown gateway. This grant allowed the organization to hire LawKingdon Architecture to lead the community design team to help in the first phase of the project.
The overall "vision" of the project is to transform the underpass from the eyesore and barrier that it is in its current state, to an inviting gateway into our Downtown that serves as a landmark of distinction. During the design process, two public input meetings were held to garner community input, and opinion data was collected from multiple online surveys through the City of Wichita's Activate Wichita website. This input played a key role in the final concepts, which address lighting, pigeon mitigation and the inclusion of art and technology in the space.
The final designs were presented at a public open house on August 26, 2014 where architects, artists, lighting consultants and engineers were available to answer questions and provide project details. The final designs also incorporated visions set forth in additional Downtown plans including Project Downtown and the Douglas Avenue TOD Study. All three public input meetings were held in the Design & Innovation Center at the Downtown Wichita offices.