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Overland Park logo on storm sewer drain cover.

Overland Park is the second most populous city in the U.S. state of Kansasmarker. Located in Johnson County, it has traditionally been considered a satellite city of Kansas City, Missourimarker, and is located adjacent to Olathemarker, Lenexamarker, Prairie Villagemarker and Leawoodmarker. The population was 149,080 at the 2000 census and was estimated at 171,231 in the 2008 census data. Overland Park has consistently ranked in the top 10 of CNN/Money and Money magazine's 100 Best Cities to Live in the United States. In the 2008 rankings, Overland Park placed 9th. Additionally, the city was ranked as one of "The Best Places to Raise Your Kids in 2009" and was ranked 3rd for "America's 10 Best Places to Grow Up" . It is also the setting for the Showtime series The United States of Tara.


The city traces its roots back to 1905, with the arrival of its founder, William B. Strang Jr., who plotted subdivisions along a military roadway on 600 acres (2.4 km²) he purchased that are now part of the old downtown area. One of those subdivisions was named Overland Park, and was the site for the first airplane flight west of the Mississippi with shows by the Wright brothers, sponsored by Strang, on December 24, 1909.

The city was incorporated as a second-class city on May 20, 1960, making it one of the youngest communities in Johnson County. Its initial population was 28,085 and was bounded by Antioch Road (West), 107th Street (South), Chadwick (East) and I-35 (North). In 1960 the population was 28,085 with incorporated. By 1990 the population was 111,790 and in 1995 the incorporated land area was . Since 1995, the population has grown to 171,231 in 2008 with of land area. Overland Park is now the second most populous city in Kansasmarker.

Geography and Climate

Overland Park is centered at 38°56'24" North, 94°40'51" West (38.94, -94.68) . According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 56.8 square miles (147.2 km²), of which, 56.8 square miles (147.0 km²) of it is land and 0.1 square miles (0.3 km²) of it is water. The total area is 0.18% water.

In early 2008, the city council voted to annex an additional south of existing city limits. The annexation went into effect March 10. After the annexation, the city spans nearly the entire distance between the northern and southern borders of Johnson County.

Overland Park lies in the 5b to 6a USDA Hardiness Zone, being too cold for many tropical plants. Overland Park has a humid continental climate (Koppen climate classification Dfa), with cold-dry winters and hot-and-humid summers. Spring and autumn are generally very mild, with occasional thunderstorms. January is the coldest month, with frequent sleet and ice-storms and a daily average temperature of 29°F. July is generally the warmest month, with highs around 90°F and higher, with relative humidity often reaching 100%.


Historical populations

1960* 21,110
1970 76,623
1980 81,784
1990 111,790
2000 149,080
2008 171,231

As of the census of 2000, there were 149,080 people, 59,703 households, and 39,702 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,627.0 people per square mile (1,014.3/km²). There were 62,586 housing units at an average density of 1,102.9/sq mi (425.8/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 90.65% White, 2.55% African American, 0.27% Native American, 3.83% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 1.24% from other races, and 1.43% from two or more races. 3.77% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 59,703 households out of which 33.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 56.8% were married couples living together, 7.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.5% were non-families. 27.4% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.7% had someone living alone who is 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.47 and the average family size was 3.06.

In the city the population was spread out with 26.2% under the age of 18, 7.0% from 18 to 24, 32.5% from 25 to 44, 23.0% from 45 to 64, and 11.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females there were 93.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 90.1 males.The median income for a household in the city was $62,116, and the median income for a family was $77,176. Males had a median income of $52,072 versus $34,186 for females. The per capita income for the city was $32,069. 3.2% of the population and 2.1% of families were living below the poverty line, including 2.9% of those under the age of 18 and 3.5% of those 65 and older.

According to a 2007 estimate, the median income for a household in the city was $70,405, and the median income for a family was $91,806.


Like any state in the midwest-southwest, Overland Park is highly populated by Protestants, reflective of the overall population of the state of Kansasmarker. Large Baptist, Methodist, Nazarene and Pentecostal churches dot the landscape of Overland Park as well as its neighboring suburbs. Overland Park is home to Congregation Beth Israel Abraham Volinermarker, an Orthodox synagogue established in Kansas City, Missourimarker in 1894. It is the only Orthodox synagogue in the Kansas City metropolitan area and in the State of Kansas..


The city is home to Overland Park Arboretum and Botanical Gardensmarker, a 300 acre (1.2 km²) arboretum and botanical garden. The Oak Park Mall is one of the area's top shopping locations with Nordstrom, 2 Dillards, Macy's, JC Penney's and over 180 major stores.

The Deanna Rose Children's Farmstead, a 12-acre, free attraction, is among the top 10 tourist destinations in the Kansas City area. It has more than 200 animals, hay rides, fishing pond, early 1900s century school house and more. It was recognized in August 2008 as the top "family" attraction in Kansas City by the Nickelodeon Channel.

Overland Park has finished construction on a 12-field tournament-quality soccer complex. All the fields have synthetic turf and lights. It has an irrigation system to cool the turf on hot days.

The city is also home to Overland Park Convention Center.

Historic Downtown Overland Park features the Farmer's Market, the clocktower plaza and a statue of Overland Park City founder William B. Strang Jr..

Major employers

The largest employer in Overland Park is Sprint Nextel Corporation, which is home to the Sprint world headquarters following a brief move to Reston, VA after Sprint's merger with Nextel. Its campus occupies 240 acres (1 km²) in the city, and employs about 18,500 people.

The city is also the headquarters for YRC Worldwide, local telecommunications carrier Embarq, restaurant chain Applebee's, and the employee-owned Black & Veatch Corporation. The Shawnee Mission, Blue Valley, Spring Hill and Olathe school districts also employ several thousand people in the city.


Public education in Overland Park is provided by several school districts including Shawnee Mission School District, Blue Valley School District and Olathe School District.

The Johnson County Library serves the city. Overland Park is the location of several branch institutions:

Sister cities

Overland Park has one sister city, Bietigheim-Bissingenmarker, Germanymarker.

Public Transportation

The city does not have its own public transportation system. However, Johnson County, Kansas operates "The JO" within the city limits. As of 2008, Overland Park was not part of Kansas City, MO's plans for a light rail system.


  1. US Census 2008 Estimated Population
  2. Best Places to Live 2006 - Money Magazine
  6. City of Overland Park: "County Approved Annexation",
  8. BIAV History, Synagogue website.
  9. Lipoff, Beth. "New year, new rabbi for Congregation BIAV", The Kansas City Jewish Chronicle, September 26, 2008.
  10. New Soccer Park

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