Kansas City conjures up images of tons of things to do, quality people, and a bustling economy. The region consistently ranks as one of the best places to live across the country.
But not everyone is cut out for city life. Some people would prefer to live in the cities and towns that surround Kansas City.
So the question arises, do the suburbs maintain a semblance of the larger-than-life appeal of their more famous neighbor?
Today, we’ll use science and data to determine which Kansas City ‘burbs need a little tender loving care – the sore thumbs of the Kansas City area if you will. Realistically, you can’t expect all the suburbs to live up to Kansas City proper, although Fairway certainly tries.
We examined the 32 biggest suburbs of Kansas City to find out the worst places to live. And while you won’t find them on the worst places to live in Missouri, these ten places are a little too far downwind of Kansas City in terms of quality of life:
- Sugar Creek
- Edwardsville, KS
- North Kansas City
- Bonner Springs, KS
Read on to see how we determined the places around Kansas City that need a pick-me-up. And remember, don’t blame the messenger. And once you’re done, you can look at the bottom of the story for a complete chart of worst to best.
How we determined the worst Kansas City ‘burbs
To figure out how bad a place is to live in, we only needed to know what kinds of things people like and then decide what cities have the least amount of those things. We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible. Using the Census’s most recent 2010-2014 American Community Survey, this is the criteria we used:
- Low unemployment (Less jobs)
- Low median income (Less pay)
- Low population density (No things to do)
- Low home values (No one’s willing to pay to live here)
- High number of high school drop outs
Then, we ranked each place that have over 5,000 people around Kansas City for each of these criteria from worst to best.
The place with the lowest average rankings for these criteria ranks as the worst suburb of Kansas City.
Read on below to learn more about these terrible places around Kansas City to live. Or skip to the end to see the list of all 32 suburbs ranked from worst to best.
This list is a scientific analysis based on real data and is completely unbiased. Snarkiness incorporated for entertainment purposes only. Hold on to your pants.
1. Sugar Creek
Population: 3,344Median Income: $37,151
Median Home Value: $83,900
2. Edwardsville, KS
Population: 4,367Median Income: $54,244
Median Home Value: $116,100
Population: 24,860Median Income: $41,559
Median Home Value: $105,200
Population: 117,160Median Income: $44,038
Median Home Value: $98,800
Population: 3,023Median Income: $41,417
Median Home Value: $168,800
Population: 23,197Median Income: $53,316
Median Home Value: $122,300
7. North Kansas City
Population: 4,280Median Income: $38,423
Median Home Value: $136,200
8. Bonner Springs, KS
Population: 7,420Median Income: $54,658
Median Home Value: $150,100
Population: 4,747Median Income: $57,625
Median Home Value: $145,400
Population: 29,520Median Income: $49,442
Median Home Value: $98,300
The areas around Kansas City that you probably don’t want to live in
Well there you have it — the worst of the ‘burbs surrounding Kansas City with Sugar Creek landing ahead of the pack.
As we mentioned earlier, the suburbs around Kansas City aren’t all bad. Fairway takes the cake as the best place to live around Kansas City.
For the chart below, these are ranked from worst to best.
For more Missouri reading, check out:
- If You’re From St. Louis This Will Be The Most Jaw-Dropping Thing You See Today. No Contest.
- If You’re From Missouri This Will Be The Funniest Thing You See All Day. Guaranteed.
- 35 Pictures That Will Make You Fall Even More In Love With Missouri
Detailed List Of Kansas City Suburbs
|North Kansas City||7|