Blue River Parkway
Jackson County Parks and Recreation
This linear parkway of over 2,300 acres lines the upper Blue River and is primarily forested. The river and adjacent riparian forest provides significant habitat for a wide range of plants and animals. Bird life along the parkway includes nesting species like the barred owl, prothonotary warbler, spotted sandpiper, wood duck, belted kingfisher, green heron and pileated woodpecker. The upper Blue River has an almost Ozarkian character – cascading over ledges of limestone and shale as rocky riffles intersperse with deeper pools. The parkway also serves as an uninterrupted public land corridor from Swope Park south to the state line. Parkway lands are threatened by litter and dumping as well as a number of invasive exotic plant species.
Thanks to multiyear grants through the Missouri Department of Conservation’s Missouri Bird Conservation Initiative, KCWL is currently conducting an accelerated restoration effort in the bottomland forest of the corridor south of Red Bridge Road, including intensive honeysuckle eradication, indigenous tree and shrub planting and monitoring.
Hours: Dawn to dusk
Pets: On leash only
Numerous access points along Blue River Road, Blue Ridge Blvd, Holmes Road and Minor Park (Red Bridge Rd).
Current access points for KCWL workdays:
118th Street and Lydia access:
Take Holmes Road to E. 117th Terrace and turn east (you will enter a residential area). Continue east for approximately 0.3 miles to Troost Avenue. Turn right on Troost Avenue and then left onto 118th Street. Continue east on 118th for about 0.25 mile, past the “No Outlet” sign and over a small bridge to the parking on your right. You’re there!
(For Mapquest users, the address is E 118th St & Lydia Ave, Kansas City, MO 64131)
Minor Park Tennis Courts access:
Take Holmes Road to Red Bridge Road (where 111th Street should be). From Holmes, turn east on Red Bridge and continue for approximately 0.9 mile to Blue River Road. Turn right (south) on Blue River Road and continue for approximately 0.2mile to the Minor Park Tennis Courts and RC Field entrance on the right.
Alex George (Blue Swope Connector) access:
Take Holmes Road to Red Bridge Road (where 111th Street should be). From Holmes, turn east on Red Bridge and continue for approximately 0.9 mile to Blue River Road. Turn left (north) on Blue River Road and continue for approximately 0.25 mile to Alex George Lake parking lot (on your left).
For Mapquest users, the address is approximately 10750 Blue River Rd, Kansas City, MO 64131