2 votes

8th Street Tunnel


Photo scanned by Internet Archive Book Images


View this photo at archive.org

BH Photo #381930


Researched 04/24/2008

The 8th Street Tunnel was first built in 1888 as a 1,100 ft. tunnel under downtown Kansas City Missouri, connecting the bluffs of the West Bottoms to 8th street and Delaware in downtown.
In 1903, the tunnel was enlarged, and expanded to a distance of 3,000 ft.
In 1962, the tunnel entrances were filled and capped with a vault, and the tunnel was abandoned.
In 1974, the tunnel was being researched for automobile use.
However, the tunnel was lost, and could not be found. It was lost until 2004, when two men of a survey team seen a metal object emerging from the ground. The two men, dug up the object and found it was the east vault to the tunnel.
The tunnel was opened and found to be intact, except for a caved in part under Interstate 35.
The tunnel was then sold to a private party, and now give tours of the tunnel in the summertime.


Tunnel under downtown Kansas City Missouri and Interstate 35
Kansas City, Jackson County, Missouri
Open to pedestrians for tour in summertime.
Built 1888; abandoned 1962, opened for tours in 2005
- Inter-State Consolidated Rapid Transit Railway
- Kansas City Elevated Railway
- Kansas City Public Service Co. (KCPS)
- Metropolitan Street Railway Co. (Met)
Total length: 3,000.0 ft. (0.6 mi.)
Also called
West Bottoms streetcar tunnel
Approximate latitude, longitude
+39.10478, -94.59043   (decimal degrees)
39°06'17" N, 94°35'26" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
15/362481/4329607 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Kansas City
Inventory number
BH 36477 (Bridgehunter.com ID)

Update Log 

  • November 7, 2019: New photo from Geoff Hubbs
  • March 8, 2017: New photo from Luke
  • August 10, 2012: Updated by Clark Vance: Added category "Railroad"
  • July 18, 2012: Updated by Luke Harden: Edited status and added link
  • April 24, 2008: Essay added by Max Johnson



8th Street Tunnel
Posted February 25, 2014, by Clark Vance (cvance [at] dogmail [dot] com)

State Street Corporation occupies the building at the pin on the map. They currently control access via the only known tunnel entrance which is in the parking garage of the building. It is fenced and locked with human security in the parking area.

Penn Seven LLC is the listed building owner and their mail goes to DST Realty. DST is of course the financial services group started as a part of Kansas City Southern Railway. DST also has a relationship with State Street.

Too much info? State Street sometimes offers tours of the tunnel but don't count on being on the invitation list.

The tunnel itself runs mostly under city owned streets and the federal highway RoW.

8th Street Tunnel
Posted February 25, 2014, by Craig (ckdalrymple [at] gmail [dot] com)

Who is the current owner of this tunnel?