Google Fiber, Overland Park and downhill skiing

David Chartrand

David Chartrand

Overland Park’s current negotiations over Google Fiber demonstrate the principle of downhill skiing.

Once you start there’s no turning back.  Once you start giving freebie it’s hard to stop.   Pretty soon everyone’s hand is out, including your own.

Overland Park City Council members are balking at Google’s request for a number of technical concessions in its pending contract for high-speed internet service to local residents. It wants a lawsuit waiver and unobstructed access to city easements and rights of way.

Overland Park wants freebies, too:  Free Google wifi in public places and a lifetime subscription Netflix for all council members.  Just kidding about the Netflix.  Doesn’t hurt to ask, right?  Overland Park is having more receiving than giving. Continue reading

Olathe Commons Apartment proposal sent back to planning by council — again


For the second time this year, the Olathe City Council has denied the application for an apartment development plan located on 119th Street and Alcan Street.

City council members voted unanimously to send the plan back to the Olathe Planning Commission, which also denied the application at a meeting on May 13. The Olathe City Council also denied the application at a meeting in April.

The scaled down plan proposed Tuesday saw a reduction of overall apartment units from 550 to 510, thus declining the density from 18.9 apartments per acre to 17.5. The buildings on the south property line were reduced from three-story to two-story buildings. The new plan also reduced the total number of parking spaces from 1,016 to 807 spaces.

“We are trying to find a balance for everyone so we can bring a great project to Olathe,” said John Peterson, an attorney representing Maecommon, LLC, the developer of the project. Continue reading

Fire safety rolls in Olathe

In an effort to help make families safer, the “Fire and Life Safety Experience” brings safety information to third grade elementary students in more than 30 Olathe schools each year. The Fire and Life Safety Experience is a “hands on” safety house on wheels.

Inside the house, children hunt for home hazards in a kitchen and living room and practice a fire escape from the bedroom. Firefighters use theater smoke, in the bedroom, to simulate a real fire while children get low and crawl to their best exit. In this case, the door is warm and children must use their second exit which is a window with short ladder at the back of the safety house.

At 9 a.m., Thursday, May 16, Olathe’s Fire and Life Safety Experience will be at Ridgeview Elementary, 1201 E. Elm.

Lightning hits Olathe home; family cat OK

Just before 11 a.m., a 911 call reported a house fire at 1037 N. Crest Drive, near Harold and Parker Streets in Olathe. When firefighters arrived they found a basement fire that had started to burn through part of the first floor.

Firefighters brought the fire under control within about 25 minutes. They also found the family cat, Anthony, who was hiding behind a dryer in a first-floor laundry room. A closed door to the laundry room helped keep the fire’s toxic smoke away from Anthony.

Firefighters reunited Anthony, with his family of two, in the driveway.

A fire investigator believes that lightning was the cause of the blaze. Damage is estimated around $50,000.

The video is courtesy of the Olathe Fire Department.

OMC’s Devocelle receives Cathedral Builder Award

Frank H. Devocelle, President/CEO of Olathe Health System, Inc. (OHSI) was awarded the Cathedral Builder Award from the city of Olathe. Mayor Michael Copeland presented the award at the State of the City luncheon.

“Giving back, serving others, and building our great community spirit are what Olatheans do so well,” Copeland said. “It’s individuals like Frank Devocelle who are leaving incredible legacies of service and excellence that inspire and encourage us and make us proud to call Olathe home.” Continue reading

Free Olathe Kids Fishing Derby date

The 32nd Annual Free Olathe Kids Fishing Derby has been scheduled from 7:30 a.m. to noon on Saturday, June 15, at Cedar Lake Park, south of 151st Street on Lone Elm Road, Olathe.

Registration begins at 7:30.

Registered participants receive a free T-shirt, goodie bag, and worms while supplies last. Everyone in attendance receives a free hot dog lunch with chips and water.

Five trophies are awarded to participants in various age groups and gender categories. Prizes are awarded based on random drawing from the registration numbers.

The event is sponsored by several groups, businesses and organization in cooperation and partnership with the Olathe Parks and Recreation Department.


Program at Indian Creek Library addresses hoarding issues

Valeria Edwards, K-State Extension Agent, will explore the aspects of hoarding during a program entitled, “Hoarrding: The Impact of Compulsive Keepers,” at 1:30 p.m., Tuesday, March 26, at the Indian Creek Branch Library, 12990 S. Black Bob Road, Olathe. Also discussed will be the economic and social impacts of hoarding, and coaching techniques to address people who hoard.

There are still openings in the program. To register go on-line or call 913-971-6888.


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