Olathe citizens have indicated that a high quality of life is one of the most important considerations in future planning, as well as one of Olathe’s greatest existing assets. In addition to the traditional factors that draw people to communities, such as jobs and housing, community leaders recognize quality of life as increasingly important. This is evident in local community planning efforts across the country, as well as in national surveys like Money magazine’s Best Places to Live annual rankings and the Best Places Almanac, where Olathe has received high marks. The concept is that people relocate and settle in places that are appealing on various levels, providing a balance of economic stability, recreation opportunities, healthy surroundings, cultural experiences, and educational foundation. Communities like Olathe that offer such high-level amenities are better able to forge the social, civic, and cultural bonds that allow a community to prosper and flourish over time.
This Chapter describes how quality of life is defined and how Olathe performs relative to the primary elements of the Comprehensive Plan (PlanOlathe), beginning with a description of the issues identified through the public involvement process. Each section summarizes the key quality of life findings, including city-wide inventories and analyses, housing assessment and market analysis. The Chapter also includes an analysis of the relationship between quality of life, cost of living, economic sustainability and the fiscal challenges of the City.