The Union Hill Homes Association contacted Artistic Concrete Surfaces, Olathe, Kan., because it wanted to revive its historic area in concert with the revitalization of the rest of downtown Kansas City. Artistic Concrete Surfaces' goal was to design a project that would be significant to the Union Hill area and the history of Kansas City. It decided on a compass design because Union Hill was a stopping point along historic trails crossing downtown Kansas City on their way to Westport, Mo., and because Union Hill overlooks the famous Union Station train depot. The compass is true, and points directly north towards downtown and Union Station.
When demolition began, the crew discovered that the existing concrete, which they believed was 4 inches thick, was actually around 10 inches thick, so concrete removal took longer than anticipated. When demolition was complete, installation of new stamped and stained concrete began. Artistic Concrete Surfaces poured 6 inches of concrete (a six-sack 4000 psi with air mix), and selected a seamless slate pattern to give the project an old stone look. Once the concrete was in place, the compass design lines were sawcut into the concrete using a real compass as guidance. When the sawcuts were complete, acid stains were added to the design. To finish the surface, two coats of solvent sealer were applied to make it both durable and attractive.