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Turkey Creek

  • The Ship 1217 Union Ave Kansas City, MO 64101 United States (map)

Tim Amundson 

Investigation :  Flowing Water 

Site : Laramie Lake 

Event : KCDC + WBR + PUBLIC ; 10 Spots Available RSVP @

Description : Turkey Creek

Any serious investigation of Kansas City that did not account for the West Bottoms would be woefully incomplete !  The same could be said of any investigation of the West Bottoms that does not account for Turkey Creek.  The histories of these two features are irrevocably intertwined, geologically, geographically, and culturally.  Ironically, in present times, these two bodies no longer interface, at least not in any obvious way.  In 1913, the construction of the Turkey Creek Diversion Tunnel, made it so that the bulk of the watershed preemptively drained into the Kaw, avoiding the floodplain where it once found confluence.  The purpose of this diversion was to allow for the installation of the early 20th century's largest sewer ,still in place just south of Kemper Arena.  The Turkey Creek Sewer is profoundly responsible for the West Bottoms we know today, making it possible for a mostly dry floodplain just in time for the Industrial Era.  It is a phenomenal constant that water flows downhill, though you may find this is no longer an observable event as we explore the Central Industrial District of the West Bottoms.  Join the Turkey Creek Institute for Phenomenal Awareness as we examine this scientific discrepancy and the simulacra that it has enabled. Please wear shoes for walking !

The Turkey Creek Institute For Phenomenal Awareness

We seek to raise phenomenal awareness in the public by fostering engagement with Turkey Creek.  Some interesting frameworks for engagement have been photographic archiving, psychogeographic exploration, local histories, and landscape ecology. Turkey Creek is a modest watershed that exists entirely within an urban environment.  It can be found beside, beneath, or near Interstate 35 as it travels through Johnson and Wyandotte Counties in the Kansas City, Kansas metropolitan area.  The valley formed by Turkey Creek has served as a navigation route for hundreds of years.  Its current environment is dominated by light industry, commercial development, auto and railway infrastructure, suburban residential neighborhoods, and engineered flood control constructions.  Despite the heavy traffic of the area, many native residents have never engaged with Turkey Creek, some admit to having no awareness of it at all.  What would it mean to rethink this creek as a place for learning rather than ignoring, for immersion rather than evasion, for involvement rather than abandonment?

The Turkey Creek Institute For Phenomenal Awareness was founded in 2014 by Timothy Amundson. Check out this Phenomenal work and history !