Downtown KC Business Owners Enjoy Boost On Streetcar's Opening Weekend

May 9, 2016

Kansas City's highly-anticipated streetcar opened last weekend, to great fanfare

But once the opening ceremony died down, business owners along the streetcar route returned to business as usual.

Soroush Rajabnik is the general manager at Burrito Bros. in the City Market. He says they were busier than normal this weekend, but he had to park more than five blocks away.
Credit Lisa Rodriguez / KCUR 89.3

Soroush Rajabnik is the general manager of Burrito Bros. in the City Market. He says the weekend was slightly busier than normal, though he thinks it was due to a combination of the streetcar opening, families going out for Mother's Day and the nice weather.

The only downside was parking. 

"It was horrible, some of us that work here in the market had to park like five blocks away, just to find a spot," Rajabnik says.

Parking can be a challenge most weekends at the River Market, but Rajabnik says they'll have to figure out an alternative to make parking more convenient for employees.

If the streetcar delivers more weekends like this one, the extra trouble parking might be worth the hassle. 

"It's good though, it's really good," he says.

Tom Gerend, executive director of the Kansas City Streetcar Authority said on Twitter that an estimated 32,000 people rode the streetcar in the first two days.

Other than a few malfunctions on one of the streetcars, officials say the weekend was a success.

Lisa Rodriguez is a reporter and producer at KCUR 89.3. Connect with her on Twitter@larodrig