hmm most New Urbanism developments ain't nothing but that pig sprawl with lipstick.
Going to Barcelona or New York won't help you do much to KC. Look at places like St Louis instead.
You seem to think that only your mindset is best. A planner can't do squat without building coallitions, listening to needs, and addressing the goals of a community.
Planners are not Popes. We listen and respond to needs we do not have the power of change, we only guide it. It is ultimately up to the citizenry and economics to decide a cities fate.
You can't have cities without people. People are more important than streets or density.