Waldo Water Tower (Kansas City, Missouri)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Not to be confused with Waldo Water Tower (Waldo, Arkansas).
Waldo Water Tower
Waldo Water Tower (Kansas City, Missouri) is located in Missouri
Waldo Water Tower (Kansas City, Missouri)
Location 75th St. and Holmes Rd., Tower Park, Kansas City, Missouri
Coordinates 38°59′25″N 94°34′55″W / 38.99028°N 94.58194°W / 38.99028; -94.58194Coordinates: 38°59′25″N 94°34′55″W / 38.99028°N 94.58194°W / 38.99028; -94.58194
Built 1919
Architect Tifft Const. Co.
Governing body Local
NRHP Reference # 77000810[1]
Added to NRHP April 18, 1977

The Waldo water tower, officially called the Frank T. Riley Memorial, is a white, castle-like tower in the Waldo neighborhood of south Kansas City, Missouri.[2]

The structure was a functioning water tower from 1920 until 1957.[2] The tower was pictured each year from 1929 to 1946 in the World Book Encyclopedia as an early example of reinforced concrete.[3] It was listed in 1975 as Missouri's first American Water Landmark by the American Water Works Association, and is on the National Register of Historic Places.[3]

The 12-sided tower is 134 feet tall, with walls 18 inches thick, and a capacity of 1 million gallons. The tower is topped by crenellations and 12 arched windows. It was constructed using a 14-day continuous pour.[2]

In August 1962, the remains of a 20-year-old man missing since the previous November were discovered in the bottom of the tower. To retrieve the body, a hole was created near the bottom of the tower. The location of that hole is still visible on the west side of the tower. The tower is currently protected from vandals and climbers by a chain-link fence topped with barbed wire.[2]


  1. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2009-03-13. 
  2. ^ a b c d Campbell, Matt (10 March 2009). "Group wants to improve a towering landmark". The Kansas City Star. Retrieved 11 March 2009. [dead link]
  3. ^ a b Tillotson, Bette (2002–2005). "A History of Waldo: Waldo Facts". Waldo Area Business Association. Retrieved 11 March 2009. 

External links[edit]