How do I Reserve a Shelter at Tower Park?

Welcome to Tower Park!
Tower ParkHistory

The 19-acre park at has a notable feature that is registered on the National Register of Historic Places and gives the park its name. A large white tower formerly used as a real water tower dominates the area with its height of almost 134 feet.

The tower or “standpipe” was built by the Kansas City, Missouri Water Department in 1919-1920 to help provide water pressure for the nearby area. According to the nomination form for the National Register of Historic Places, George Kessler, Landscape Architect with the Park Department and W. C. Goodwin, Chief Engineer of the Water Department chose the design. Made of reinforced concrete, the tower had a capacity of 1,000,000 gallons. In service until 1957, it was declared an American Water Landmark by the American Water Works Association in 1975.

The property for the water tower was purchased by the City of Kansas City from Frank Teal Riley, a noted local publisher. While the tower is now known as the Waldo Water Tower, it also has the name of Frank T. Riley Memorial. In 1944 the area north of the water tower was being considered by developers for housing for war workers. Neighborhood residents presented a petition to request that the area around the tower be made a public park instead.

The park area was known as “Tower Park” and the name was made official in 1954. In 1965, by mutual agreement between the Water Department and Park Department, the maintenance of the tower was transferred to the Park Department; the Water Department still owns the tower.


Raingarden; .77 mile asphalt exercise trail; Two (2) shelters, one (1) that is reservable; a playground, and two ball diamonds.


75th Street and Holmes Road

Shelter House Reservations

The Parks and Recreation Department reserves several shelter houses throughout the city. Shelter houses can be reserved by calling (816) 513-8931 or in person at 6901 Elmwood. The reservation office is open Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

You may reserve a shelter beginning the first Monday of March for reservations in that year.


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