Tuesday, June 01, 2010

On the Corner In Kansas City

It's hard to hate an attractive park. Yet I loathe Paseo Green.

These photos show what's standing at Kansas City's fabled intersection of 12th Street & Vine. Here's a satellite view.

The corner represents much more than a Leiber and Stoller lyric from a Wilbert Harrison hit. It was once one of the world's premier musical destinations.

Here's the text on a plaque at the site:
During the early-1970s, 12th and Vine fell victim to Urban Renewal. Kansas City's Land Clearance for Redevelopment Authority leveled most of the neighborhood surrounding 12th and Vine, as part of a city-wide rebuilding effort. In 1977, the Authority realigned the streets to create Paseo Green Park. Unfortunately, the reconfiguration of the streets eliminated the famed intersection of 12th and Vine. Now, with the creation of the Goin' to Kansas City Plaza at Twelfth Street and Vine, the historic corner of 12th and Vine has been restored.

Established in 2005, the grand piano-shaped plaza celebrates the intersection of 12th and Vine and the song "Kansas City." The piano monument base, nestled in the heart of the treble clef at the center of the park, serves as a platform for a featured sculpture that embodies the spirit of 12th and Vine. The park is designed to be a work-in-progress with a new sculpture commissioned every few years. Existing sculptures will then be placed throughout the park creating a sculpture garden. Linking Kansas City's past and future, the Goin' to Kansas City Plaza at Twelfth Street and Vine allows visitors, once again, to be standin' on the corner of Twelfth Street and Vine.
The original "piano monument base" remains the park's sole sculpture. I really don't care about that broken promise. A thousand sculptures couldn't begin to repair the tragic debasement of the celebrated location.

(Cross-posted from Plastic Sax. Original images by Plastic Sax.)


bigsteveno said...

I feel a lot better knowing that the "featured sculpture ... embodies the spirit of 12th and Vine."

Happy In Bag said...

Don't get me started, Steve.