Leawood works to improve cell service in city’s southern half

The city of Leawood is working with three cell service providers to improve service in the south part of town, where most service issues have been reported. Cell tower image via Shuttershock.

Following resident complaints of service issues, city staff say efforts to improve cell service in Leawood are underway.

Where the problem is: Recent reports of poor cell service largely stem from the southern part of the city.

  • City Planning Director Mark Klein said the city has received the most poor cell service complaints from a southern residential stretch of Mission Road, between West 123rd and West 135th streets.
  • Complaints have stemmed from spotty service to complete dead spots, and Klein said complaints began at least four or five months ago.
  • Klein said he’s unsure how many complaints the city has received, but Leawood attributes this to bandwidth issues stemming from higher service demand in the southern part of the city.
  • As it stands, Leawood currently has four cell towers — one near Mission Road and I-435, one east of Nall Avenue in the Parkway Plaza shopping center, one at 123rd and Mission and one at the Country Club of Leawood.

Next steps: City staff say efforts to improve cell service in south Leawood are in the early stages, and the city is waiting to hear back from the cell service providers with whom they’re in discussions.

  • The city has contacted Verizon, T-Mobile and AT&T about the problem areas and have agreed to look into what’s causing it.
  • The companies are also looking at potential solutions, which could include installing more cell towers in the south part of Leawood.
  • Klein said the city has also looked at the installation of more smaller 4G and 5G monopole cell towers as a means of improving cell service. 
  • “We are seeing a lot of that coming through, and Leawood has been approving those administratively as they have come in,” he said.
  • Klein told the Leawood City Council during its Sept. 6 meeting that some cell towers outside Leawood can still serve the city, for instance, if they’re close by but are across city or state lines in Overland Park or Kansas City, Missouri.