Kansas City is a large, major midwestern city on the border of Missouri and Kansas. It is the largest city in Missouri with a population around 450,000 people and more than 2 million in its metropolitan area (2005 estimate).
Kansas City is a great city that tends to hide itself from tourists. Having reportedly more boulevards than Paris and more fountains than any other city in the world except for Rome, it can be a beautiful city, too. It is also unique, in that it is split down the middle by the state line of Kansas and Missouri.
The suburbs are largely south of the central city, though the area north of the Missouri River (known locally as the Northland) is beginning to experience growth similar to the south. Numbering of east/west streets begins at the Missouri River with the east/west division occurring at Main Street. Westport is around 40th Street, the Plaza at 47th Street, Brookside at 55th, and Waldo beginning around Gregory (71st Street).
First, purchase a good book style map. The national map companies produce book style maps that can be purchased at many grocery and book stores. Local real estate agents and delivery drivers use a book map produced by a local company in the crossroads district but it is hard to find. The one inside the Feist directory is good and can often be obtained locally for free but the directory itself may be too bulky to carry.