City of Wichita

Nadya Faulx / KMUW/File photo

A furniture store, not a grocery store, will soon occupy the former Walmart Neighborhood Market in northeast Wichita.

Walmart closed several Neighborhood Markets in Wichita last year, including one at 13th and Oliver. American Freight, an Ohio-based furniture store known for low-cost items, will move into the space.

“We just really want to build up the business in that area and so we welcome American Freight to come in," says City Council member Lavonta Williams. "But we also have that desire and that need for groceries.”

City of Wichita

The City of Wichita is taking public comments about its proposed use of federal funds from the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

The city receives Community Development Block Grant, HOME Investment Partnerships and Emergency Solutions Grant funds. The city's 2017-2018 action plan, which begins July 1, allocates an estimated $4.3 million for programs benefiting low- and moderate-income residents in Wichita. Those programs include affordable housing, domestic violence shelters, homeless prevention and homeless assistance.

Chris Murphy / flickr Creative Commons

The City of Wichita is considering establishing a Tax Increment Financing, or TIF, district to support development along the west bank of the Arkansas River.

The TIF district would help fund improvements to the 95-acre area that includes Lawrence-Dumont Stadium, the Delano Catalyst Site and the future Advanced Learning Library.

Mel Peffs / flickr Creative Commons

The City of Wichita is moving forward with a three-year plan to stay below federal ozone standards and improve air quality. The strategy was presented to City Council members at a workshop on Tuesday.

City of Wichita

Wichita City Council members on Tuesday approved an $18 million, wide-ranging Aquatics Master Plan that will close all but three of the city’s pools.

Councilman Bryan Frye put forth the amended proposal, which keeps open Aley, College Hill and Harvest pools. It will convert six other city pools into splash pads, and install splash pads at Harrison and Planeview parks. Minisa pool will close and be replaced with an unspecified amenity.

Carla Eckels / KMUW

On Tuesday, the Wichita City Council is expected to vote on the Aquatics Master Plan that could close up to nine pools in the city.

Council members will look at several options and determine whether to renovate some of the pools and close others.

The only pool that would be certain to survive is located in College Hill. The other nine were constructed over 35 years ago and need infrastructure improvements.

The first option would retain five pools, while the second option would keep the College Hill pool open as the nine others become splash-pad type sites.

Nadya Faulx

The City of Wichita is looking at making safety and aesthetic improvements to Old Town.

City Council members approved designs Tuesday for work on 1st and 2nd Streets west of Washington.

The $3.5 million improvement plan includes widening the sidewalks and installing speed bumps at certain intersections to slow traffic without lowering the speed limit.

The City of Wichita is starting the first phase of a project to improve traffic signals.

$500,000 from the city’s Capital Improvement Plan budget will go toward addressing traffic delay times.

Public Works Director Alan King explained at the mayor's briefing Thursday that Wichita has one of the lowest delay times among 100 similarly-sized cities. It takes 20 minutes on average to get across town.

“Still, we want to focus on continuing to reduce our delay times," he said.

City of Wichita

The City of Wichita has been working since Monday in preparation for this weekend’s possible ice storm.

Public Works director Alan King said at a briefing Thursday that trucks have been depositing a brine solution onto streets to reduce the amount of ice that can accumulate. A salt-sand mix will be added to roads once the storm hits.

“We're not 100% sure what's going to happen, but we’re preparing for the worst," King said.

He said there will be some risk for drivers until trucks can lay the salt-sand mix down on all 1500 lane miles of road.

City of Wichita

The Wichita City Council elected a new vice-mayor during a special meeting Monday.

Janet Miller won in a unanimous vote. She represents District 6, which covers north-central Wichita and includes Old Town.

Miller was the only council member to express interest in the position.

"I would be very interested and pleased, it would be my privilege to serve as your vice mayor for this next year," she told the council before the vote.

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