Forbes magazine analyzed the vacancy rate for rental properties and homes, and Kansas City came out as No. 1.Many local bloggers (I assume) took advantage of the report to launch another volley of vitriol at the KCMO's short comings, citing the daffy mayor and the political mess in city hall, the crumbling sewer and street infrastructure, the multiple missteps in business recruitment and development, the horrible pre-Renaissance quality of the school system, and the so-called "high" so-called "murder rate" of the city's east side.
The vacancy rate for rentals in the metro area rose to 15 percent over the past year. The homeowner vacancy rate has nearly doubled to 3.8 percent.
Nationally, the average homeowner vacancy rate in the country's 75 largest cities improved to 2.7 percent, while the rental vacancy rate is at 10.2 percent.
And sure, if you only focus on the negative it's easy to come up with rationalizations for why people would leave KCMO's urban core.
But while everyone is kvetching about how bad thing are, let me just say that I enjoy KCMO. I think the town has a lot to offer. There are a couple of lovable sports teams in the Royals and Chiefs. Oh sure they may not win many games, but their bumbling and incompetent ways are endearing, like Otis the Drunk in the Andy Griffith show.
Speaking of bumbling and incompetent, KCMO's city council (and mayors, TIFF commissions, park boards, etc) is as entertaining and full of drama as Desperate Housewives, and almost as meaningful. If not for the hijinks of these various boards, councils and barefoot volunteers, most newspapers and bloggers in KCMO wouldn't have anything to writer about.
So I say cheers to Kansas City, Missouri. It may only be a suburb of Johnson County, but it's still one of my favorite places to visit on weekends and avoid during the week.
tagged: Kansas City, Forbes, suburb, Johnson County, Royals, Chiefs