Bypass that runs northeast of the City of Wichita, KS.
Project Type:Bypass Project Mode:Highway Average Annual Daily Traffic:60,700 Length (mi):10.50
Economic Distress:1.29 Population Density (ppl/sq mi):470 Population Growth Rate (%):1.32
Employment Growth Rate (%):0.84 Market Size:16,993 Airport Travel Distance:48.8819 Topography:4
Region:Great Lakes / Plains State:KS County:Grady & Kiowa
City:Wichita Urban/Class Level:Mixed Local Area:N/A
Impact Area:County Transportation System:Highway GIS Lat/Long:37.687350 / -97.342670
Initial Study Date:1988 Post Constr. Study Date:2008
Constr. Start Date:1989 Constr. End Date:1993
Project Year of Expenditure (YOE): 1993 Planned Cost (YOE $):137,954,000
Actual Cost (YOE $):103,200,000 Actual Cost (curr $):176,513,674
NOTE: All pre/post dollar values are in 2013$
Select a region to display the conditions for that region:
NOTE: All impact dollar values are in 2013$
|Income (in $M's)||934.73||373.93||1308.66|
|Output (in $M's)||3360.50||1344.32||4704.82|
The Wichita Northeast Bypass (K-96) is a 10.5 mile, four-lane bypass that runs northeast of the City of Wichita, Kansas. The bypass provides better access for the suburban communities northeast of the city as well as increased efficiency for regional traffic traveling east-west through southern Kansas. The project cost roughly $103 million. Since it was completed in 1993, Wichita's K-96 Northeast Bypass corridor has dramatically influenced the Wichita region's development patterns both in terms of land use and employment. New development in the corridor includes the Greenwich business park, Cox Communications and Sonaca NMF, and other upscale office, retail, and residential complexes. It is estimated that development along the Northeast Bypass corridor contributed nearly 24,000 new jobs to the region between 1993 and 2006, generating $1.2 billion in annual income along the corridor in 2006.
2.1 Location & Transportation Connections
Wichita's K-96 Northeast Bypass corridor runs northeast of the city of Wichita, Kansas. Wichita, the largest city in Kansas, is located in Sedgwick County. K-96 begins east of Wichita at the I-35 (Kansas Turnpike) / US 54/400 interchange and intersects with I-135 north of Wichita before continuing northwestward. The 10.5 mile, four-lane bypass runs between I-35 to I-135.
Wichita is home to Wichita Mid-Continent Airport, the largest airport in Kansas. Flights from Wichita's airport travel to many U.S. airport hubs via nine commercial carriers. Mid-Continent is currently experiencing growth, and served a record 1.6 million passengers in 2007.
Wichita is roughly 200 miles southwest of Kansas City, along I-35 and 150 miles due north of Oklahoma City, also along I-35. The nearest Amtrak station is in Newton (20 miles north of Wichita), offering service on the Southwest Chief route between Los Angeles and Chicago.
2.2 Community Character & Project Context
The K-96 Bypass is located in northeast suburbs of Wichita. Wichita is the county seat of Sedgwick County, Kansas. The 2006 estimated population of Wichita was 361,420, making it the 51st largest city in the country and the most populous city in Kansas. During the 1970's, the city's population grew by only 1%, but the growth rate has accelerated in recent decades. Wichita's population grew by 13% between 1990 and 2000, and strong growth continued after 2000.
The Wichita metropolitan region employs 255,000 people. Per capita income in Wichita was $22,734 in 2007, compared to the Kansas average of $ 24,579.
Wichita was once known as the Air Capital of the World, as it was a hub of early aircraft manufacturing. Cessna, Hawker Beechcraft, Learjet, and Spirit AeroSystems are based in Wichita, and both Airbus and Boeing maintain a significant presence in the city. Wichita is also home to Coke, Inc. headquarters. The City has evolved into a regional destination for culture and entertainment. The downtown district offers nightclubs, restaurants, shopping centers, museums and parks, and several universities, the largest of which is Wichita State University.
The Wichita Northeast Bypass is a 10.5 mile, four-lane highway (K-96) running northeast of Wichita, Kansas. The project began in 1989 and was fully open to traffic in December of 1993. Bypass construction included seven arterial street interchanges, as well as interchanges at the bypass termini with US 54 and I-135. The total project cost was over $103 million. Land assembly was relatively easy, and thus right-of-way costs were relatively low. A large portion of land in the project area was owned by two large land-owners, and some of it was donated to encourage the quick development of the bypass.
The K-96 Northeast Bypass was designed and built jointly by the state, Sedgwick County, and the City of Wichita. It was constructed under Kansas DOT's System Enhancements program, part of the state's Comprehensive Highway Program. The local (city and county) support of the project and collaboration with the State's CHP program were key factors in the project's development. Bypass improvement projects were not a priority for the state DOT and, with funding constrained it is unlikely that the K-96 bypass would have been developed as quickly without local funding and support.
The bypass was constructed to add new transportation capacity in the northeast quadrant of Wichita's suburbs. It was built to improve mobility within, and access to, Wichita's booming northeast suburbs, which were served by an increasingly congested arterial grid before the Northeast Bypass opened. One of the major motivations for the bypass was to reduce commuting time for those who live or work in the city's northeast corner and make it easier to guide trucks in and out of plants and warehouses on the northern and eastern outskirts of the city. It was also expected that the bypass would reduce traffic on 21st Street, as traffic that uses 21st between the interstate and neighborhoods farther northeast, such as the Rock Road area, would be able to use the more efficient K-96 bypass.
4.1 Transportation Impacts
The Northeast Bypass provided increased transportation capacity within the region. It provided more efficient local travel for those commuting from northeast Wichita to downtown. The increased capacity helped alleviate the mounting congestion on the existing arterial road network and reduced daily commute times. For several years, Wichita has been ranked number 1 in America in terms of shortest commute time, in large part because of the Northeast Bypass. Residents prefer to drive on the bypass even if it is out of the way, because it provides an easier and safer drive. By avoiding the traffic and complications of arterial grid traffic, the bypass has increased safety and reduced traffic accidents and associated injury and property damage.
The Northeast Bypass has become a key east-west route for through traffic around Wichita, providing a link to Interstate 135 in the west and the Kansas Turnpike/US-54 in the east. It provides easy, efficient access for the growing regional truck traffic associated with the increased commercial activity. The latest traffic counts (March 2007) indicate that the heaviest section of K-96, between the Oliver and Woodlawn exits, has an average daily traffic count of 60,700, compared to 17,900 in 1992, as the bypass was being completed, and 47,270 in 1997, after it had been completed.
4.2 Demographic, Economic & Land Use Impacts
The Northeast Bypass project has had significant land use and economic development impacts on the Wichita region, as it channeled and concentrated the City's growth along the K-96 corridor. Before the bypass, Northeast Wichita was home to the large Koch Industries campus and was becoming a location for upscale housing; however, the majority of the surrounding land was undeveloped. As the bypass increased transportation capacity within the region, it also provided improved access to prime greenfield sites at the city's northeast edge. This improved access fostered the rapid development of land and created a regional destination for large-scale commercial, residential, and office developments.
Without the bypass, development would have occurred much more slowly. New land-use patterns include the rapid development of the Rock Road area into a major regional retail destination. All along the corridor a mix of strip malls, "big box" retailers, upscale restaurants, office parks, entertainment complexes, multi-tenant business parks, and manufacturing and distribution centers have developed. The region has also become a center for a booming medical arts/manufacturing cluster, attracting numerous medical supply companies such as Medline Industries, Inc., Allied Medical Supply and Stryker Midwest, as well as a handful of hospitals and specialty medical centers. Several upscale mixed-residential/commercial developments such as the Waterfront and the Collective have also developed.
The new development on greenfield sites not only affected existing land uses patterns, it also brought about significant economic growth. According to a recent study conducted by KDOT, the "bypass accelerated job growth in the corridor from an average of 5% annually between 1980 and 1988, to an average of 7.3% between 1994 and 2006". The report identifies the employment impacts of the bypass to be nearly 24,000 jobs. Some of the jobs that were created in the corridor were generated from businesses that relocated from elsewhere in Wichita, so these should be considered a transfer rather than creation of new jobs. Such was the case with Star Lumber and Wichita Shirt and Cap, both of which relocated to be along the K-96 corridor. However, when companies relocate, they often expand, which creates additional jobs. Moreover, job growth in the corridor has exceeded the 1989 project funding application projection of 34,868 jobs by 2010. The actual jobs generated surpassed expectations in 2001, and in 2006 the number of jobs in the project corridor exceeded projections by 27%, or about 9,500 jobs.
In addition to employment gains, the development along the Wichita Northeast Bypass created substantial income for Wichita residents. The roughly 24,000 jobs created along the corridor from 1994 to 2006 translate into an increase in annual income (total wages and benefits) of about $1.2 billion and an increase in annual value added (a measure similar to Gross Regional Product) of $1.77 billion.
While the K-96 Bypass was a catalyst for the rapid development of Northeast Wichita, there were larger economic forces at play and the bypass's construction coincided with a boom in the Wichita economy. Wichita experienced an employment upswing shortly after the Northeast Bypass was completed due to the growth of regional industries. Wichita's primary industry is aircraft manufacturing and while civilian craft manufacturing was down, military and large commercial craft manufacturing was generally strong. This growth and the general diversification of its economy led to an economic boom in Wichita.
Wichita's development had been outpacing its geographic footprint and therefore it is not surprising that greenfield sites at the edges of the city developed to meet demand. While the Northeast quadrant was ripe for development, the Northeast Bypass did draw regional development that might not have been attracted to typical arterial-based growth, which is the norm in Wichita.
Wichita Metropolitan Planning Organization
KDOT Construction – Local Projects
City of Wichita, Economic Development
Greater Wichita Economic Development Coalition
City of Wichita, Engineer Office
Case Study Developed by ICF International