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Overland Park, Kansas
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Overland Park /'o?v?rl?nd 'p?rk/ is the second most populous city in the U.S. state of Kansas. Located in Johnson County, it is the largest suburb in the Kansas City Metropolitan Area, and is located adjacent to Olathe, Lenexa, Prairie Village and Leawood. As of the 2010 census, the city population was 173,372.[5] Overland Park has consistently ranked in the top 10 of CNN/Money and Money magazine's 100 Best Cities to Live in the United States.[6] Also in 2010, Money Magazine rated Overland Park, Kansas, the 7th best city to live in the United States.[7] Additionally, the city was ranked as one of "The Best Places to Raise Your Kids in 2009"[8] and was ranked 3rd for "America's 10 Best Places to Grow Up".[9]
The city traces its roots back to 1905, with the arrival of its founder, William B. Strang Jr.[citation needed], who plotted subdivisions along a military roadway on 600 acres (2.4 km²)[citation needed] he purchased that are now part of the old downtown area. One of those subdivisions was named Overland Park, and was the site for the first airplane flight west of the Mississippi with shows by the Wright brothers, sponsored by Strang, on December 24, 1909.
The city was incorporated as a "first class city"[10] on May 20, 1960, making it one of the youngest[citation needed] communities in Johnson County. Its initial population was 28,085 and was bounded by Antioch Road (West), 107th Street (South), Chadwick (East) and I-35 (North). In 1960 the population was 28,085 with 13 square miles (33.7 km2) incorporated. By 1990 the population was 111,790 and in 1995 the incorporated land area was 56.6 square miles (146.6 km2). Since 1995, the population has grown to 173,250 in 2008 with 75.33 square miles (195.10 km2) of land area. Overland Park is now the second most populous city in Kansas. (Wichita is the largest.)
In early 2008, the city council voted to annex an additional 15 square miles (39 km2) south of existing city limits.[11] The annexation was approved for an additional 8 miles (13 km) and went into effect March 10. After the annexation, the city spans nearly the entire distance between the northern and southern borders of Johnson County. [12]

2005 KDOT map of Johnson County showing Overland Park and surrounding communities (map legend)
Downtown Overland Park is located at 38°58'56?N 94°40'15?W (38.9822282, -94.6707917) at an elevation of 1,086 feet (331 m).[4] The city lies on the northern edge of the Osage Plains a few miles south of the Kansas River.[13] One of the river's tributaries, Turkey Creek, flows northeast through the extreme northern part of the city. South of Turkey Creek, the majority of the city lies in the watershed of the Blue River. Several of the river's tributaries run east-northeast across the city; from north to south, these include Indian Creek, Tomahawk Creek, and Negro Creek. In the far southern part of the city, two more tributaries, Coffee Creek and Wolf Creek, join to form the main stem of the Blue River itself.[14] Located in northeastern Kansas at the junction of Interstate 435 and U.S. Route 69, central Overland Park is roughly 13 miles (21 km) south-southwest of downtown Kansas City, Missouri and immediately east of Olathe, the county seat.[13]
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 75.37 square miles (195.22 km²) of which 74.84 square miles (193.84 km²) is land and 0.53 square mile (1.38 km²) is water.[5]
As a suburb of Kansas City, Overland Park is part of the Kansas City metropolitan area, and it borders other suburbs on all sides. These include Kansas City, Kansas to the north, Mission andPrairie Village to the northeast, Leawood to the east, Stilwell to the south, Olathe and Lenexa to the west, and Shawnee and Merriam to the northwest.[14]
Overland Park lies in the transition zone between North America's humid subtropical climate (Köppen Cfa) and humid continental climate (Köppen Dfa) zones, typically experiencing hot, humid summers and cold, dry winters. Spring and autumn are generally warm with occasional thunderstorms. The average temperature in Overland Park is 55 °F (13 °C). Over the course of a year, temperatures range from an average low of20 °F (-7 °C) in January to an average high of 89 °F (32 °C) in July. The high temperature reaches or exceeds 90 °F (32 °C) an average of 42 days a year, and the minimum temperature falls below the freezing point 32 °F (0 °C) an average of 109 days a year. In a typical year, Overland Park receives 37.4 inches (950 mm) of precipitation, and there are 89 days of measurable precipitation. Annual snowfall averages 18.9 inches (48 cm). On average, January is the coldest month, July is the hottest month, and June is the wettest month. The hottest temperature recorded in Overland Park was 114 °F (46 °C); the coldest temperature recorded was -29 °F (-34 °C).[15]

Historical populations







U.S. Decennial Census
As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 173,372 people, 71,443 households, and 45,516 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,316.5 people per square mile (894.4/km²). There were 76,280 housing units at an average density of 1,019.2 per square mile (393.5/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 84.4% White, 4.3% African American, 0.3% American Indian, 6.3% Asian, 2.1% from other races, and 2.5% from two or more races. Hispanics and Latinos of any race were 6.3% of the population.[5]
There were 71,443 households of which 30.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 52.0% were married couples living together, 8.4% had a female householder with no husband present, 3.2% had a male householder with no wife present, and 36.3% were non-families. 29.8% of all households were made up of individuals, and 8.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.41, and the average family size was 3.04.[5]
The median age in the city was 37.8 years. 24.7% of residents were under the age of 18; 7.4% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 28.2% were from 25 to 44; 27.6% were from 45 to 64; and 12.3% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 48.3% male and 51.7% female.[5]
The median income for a household in the city was $71,513, and the median income for a family was $93,293. Males had a median income of $65,210 versus $43,413 for females. The per capita income for the city was $39,319. 4.9% of the population and 3.3% of families were living below the poverty line, including 6.5% of those under the age of 18 and 4.9% of those 65 and older.[5]
The average appraised value of a home in Overland Park is $244,212 (2012, Johnson County Appraiser’s Office), with an assessed valuation of $2.63 billion (estimate). [16]
The largest employer in Overland Park is Sprint Nextel. The city is home to Sprint's world headquarters, which occupies 240 acres (1 km²) of the city and employs about 18,500 people.
Overland Park is also home to the headquarters of Fortune 500 company YRC Worldwide, as well as Black & Veatch, Waddell & Reed, Examinetics, Ferrellgas, Ash Grove Cement Company, and Compass Minerals. Applebee's was headquartered in the city until its move to nearby Lenexa, Kansas. Overland Park is home to Oak Park Mall. With 1,800,000 sq ft (170,000 m2) and 200 stores, it is the largest mall both in the Kansas City Metropolitan Area and the states of Kansas and Missouri.[citation needed]
The Shawnee Mission, Blue Valley, Spring Hill and Olathe school districts and Johnson County Community College also employ several thousand people in the city.
Top employers
According to Overland Park Chamber of Commerce - Leading Employers [17] the top employers in the city were:
# of Employees
Sprint Nextel
Shawnee Mission School District
Blue Valley School District
Johnson County Community College
Black & Veatch
Prescription Solutions
Overland Park Regional Medical Center
YRC Worldwide
Communityworks, Inc.
In 2011 there was $3.6 billion in retail sales in the city. In 2011 the dollar value of new residential construction was $130,598,789; and $90,733,287 in new commercial construction. [18]
Public education in Overland Park is provided by several school districts including Shawnee Mission School District, Blue Valley School District and Olathe School District.
The Shawnee Mission School District operates five high schools.
Shawnee Mission South High School
Shawnee Mission Northwest High School
Shawnee Mission East High School
Shawnee Mission West
Shawnee Mission North High School
The Olathe School District consists of four high schools.
Olathe North High School
Olathe Northwest High School
Olathe South High School
Olathe East High School
The Blue Valley School District encompasses five high schools.
Blue Valley High School
Blue Valley North High School
Blue Valley Northwest High School
Blue Valley West High School
Blue Valley Southwest High School
The Johnson County Library serves the city. Overland Park is the location of several branch institutions:
Ottawa University adult campus
University of Kansas-Edwards Campus
Johnson County Community College
Baker University Overland Park Campus
Emporia State University - Overland Park Campus (Metro Learning Center)
The Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas operates Catholic Schools in Overland Park. This list includes:
Holy Cross
Holy Spirit
John Paul II
St. Thomas Aquinas High School
Protestant Christian Schools include:
Heritage Christian Academy
Jewish Schools include:
Hyman Brand Hebrew Academy
The city does not have its own public transportation system. However, Johnson County, Kansas operates "The JO" within the city limits.[19] As of 2008, Overland Park was not part of Kansas City, MO's plans for a light rail system.[20]
Parks and recreation
Overland Park has more than 1,800 acres (7.3 km2) of park land and open space. Many of the city's 72 parks feature one or more of the following: sand volleyball, hiking and biking trails, playgrounds, tennis courts, basketball courts, and reservable shelters.
Points of interest
The city is home to Overland Park Arboretum and Botanical Gardens, a 300 acre (1.2 km²) arboretum and botanical garden. The Oak Park Mall is one of the area's top shopping locations with Nordstrom, two Dillards, Macy's, JCPenney's and nearly 200 stores.

Waterfall and Flowers at the Overland Park Arboretum & Botanical Gardens.
The Deanna Rose Children's Farmstead, a 12-acre (49,000 m2), attraction is among the top 10 tourist destinations in the Kansas City area. It has more than 200 animals, hay rides, fishing pond, early 1900s century school house and more. It was recognized in August 2008 as the top "family" attraction in Kansas City by the Nickelodeon Channel.
Overland Park has finished construction on a 12-field tournament-quality soccer complex. All the fields have synthetic turf and lights. It has an irrigation system to cool the turf on hot days.[21]
The city is also home to Overland Park Convention Center.
Historic Downtown Overland Park contains a Farmer's Market, the clocktower plaza and a statue of Overland Park City founder William B. Strang Jr..
The Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art is located on the campus of Johnson County Community College.
The city has numerous public art works installed under the Public Art Program, most notable ones being:
Shim Sham Shimmy - A sculpture of arching blue steel plates by artist David Stromeyer, installed at the intersection of 119th St and Blue Valley Parkway. It is 18 feet tall and 26 feet in diameter and is lit at night.
Overland Park contains three community centers: Matt Ross Community Center, the Jewish Community Center, and Tomahawk Ridge Community Center.

Overland Park's website
Visitor's Bureau
Chamber of Commerce
Blue Valley School District Website
Shawnee Mission School District Website