LISC National
What We Do

Choice Neighborhoods 

The Paseo Gateway area, located in Kansas City's historic Northeast, has been selected by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) as the recipient of a Choice Neighborhoods Initiative implementation grant. 

The goal of the Choice Neighborhoods Initiative is to use the transformation of public housing stock—in this case, the Chouteau Courts public housing complex—as a catalyst for improving the quality of life for public housing residents as well as residents of four surrounding neighborhoods:

  • Chouteau Courts
    A 134-unit public housing complex located at Independence Avenue and Tracy Avenue. Although considered a distressed property, Chouteau Courts can boast of remarkable levels of resident engagement, an excellent location, easy access to an elaborate system of parks, and stunning views.  
  • Independence Plaza
    A close-knit residential neighborhood with historic housing stock and important service providers like the new, $25 million Samuel U. Rodgers Health Center.  
  • Paseo West
    An employment center, home to many light industrial businesses with deep roots in the city, and the site of many social service providers.  
  • Pendleton Heights
    A residential neighborhood that was the first suburb of Kansas City; prior to its incorporation within Kansas City, local elites built grand Victorian mansions in this neighborhood that sits on bluffs high above the Missouri River. Many of those homes are still standing, but are now adjacent to bungalows built for factory and stockyard employees.  

To ensure that residents, stakeholders, and local organizations were firmly in control of the destiny of the Paseo Gateway, Greater Kansas City LISC convened Quality of Life Planning Sessions for residents and stakeholders each of the four neighborhoods in the Paseo Gateway. A final session in June 2012 brought all four neighborhoods together to develop a unified Quality of Life Plan for the entire area. Through the consensus-driven process, residents and stakeholders also developed action steps to address their goals and improve the quality of life in the Paseo Gateway in the short, medium, and long term.

LISC identified Mattie Rhodes as the Lead Agency for Paseo Gateway community engagement. LISC staff works with Mattie Rhodes to manage the Community Coordinator who will be integrated into LISC’s NeighborhoodsNOW peer learning network. This will help strengthen neighborhood engagement and ownership of the Paseo Gateway Transformation Plan even after the Choice grant ends.

For more information, visit the Paseo Gateway Choice Neighborhood Initiative website.


Ina Anderson, Senior Program Officer