"Every citizen agrees with me that the need to bring our roads and streets up-to-date is urgent. Every year our outdated and worn-out roads cost us time and money; and, much more important, they cost us lives. Traffic accidents and road congestion together cost us billions of dollars and thousands of lives every year." HARRY S. TRUMAN - MAY 1955

Kansas City owes its very existence to the Missouri and Kansas rivers; the city was founded as a river port near their confluence. But we have paid a tragic price for that fact.

On Friday, the 13th of July, 1951, after weeks of rainfall, floodwaters roared through the Central Industrial District in the West Bottoms; Argentine, Rosedale and other low-lying parts of Kansas City, Kan., and Kansas City, Mo.

Twenty thousand homes and 3,000 businesses were flooded in area's worst-ever natural disaster, which caused, in today's dollars, more than $5 billion in damage. Most of the city was without safe water to drink, and 75,000 people had to be evacuated from their homes. In the aftermath, the city's construction community rallied together to clean up the mess.

Members of Kansas City's new "heavy" constructors association - formed but one year before -- put aside competition to help spearhead the city's gigantic recovery and cleanup effort, which took seven months, tons of heavy equipment and trucks, and untold hours and manpower.

In a longer-range effort at prevention, the contractors and other key entities created a cooperative emergency plan called "Plan Bulldozer." That effective plan has been implemented to deal with ensuing disasters, and remains in place to this day.

A contractors' alliance in times of acute human need led to a longer-term sharing of resources and energies and proactive construction and maintenance of critical infrastructure, to help prevent floods and other such disasters.

Today, nearly 60 years later, the Heavy Constructors Association of Greater Kansas City includes approximately 150 proud member companies comprised of general contractors, specialty contractors, major suppliers, suppliers and affiliate members.

Heavy Constructors Association
1100 Walnut, Suite 2950
Kansas City, Missouri 64106
p: (816) 753-6443 | f: (816) 753-1239

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