By Kevin Collison
A proposed, streetcar-oriented $65 million apartment and hotel project is rolling along in the River Market, with a final development agreement with the KCATA anticipated by late August and possible construction start early next year.
The six-story development planned for what’s currently a parking lot at Third and Grand calls for about 160 apartments, a 90- to 120-room hotel, 24,000 square-feet of office, a 220-space garage and a small amount of retail.
The project is proposed by 3G Development, comprised of CBC Real Estate Group and EPC Real Estate Group, and has been in discussions with the Kansas City Area Transportation Authority, which controls the property, since last fall.
“Without question, we’ve made progress and continue to make progress with the ATA,” said Bill Crandall, a principal at CBC.
Brien Starner, president of RideKC Development, said his agency is comfortable with how the plan is progressing. It’s the development arm of the ATA.
“I’m feeling very positive about it,” he said. “There are a lot of hard questions to answer. Right now, it’s about how do we move forward and get the problems solved.”
Several key issues remain to be resolved including how public parking will be replaced, the exisiting lot has 193 spaces.
Starner said eight potential alternative sites have been identified nearby, including property owned by the Missouri Department of Transportation.
Crandall also said city planners would like to “manage down” the number of garage spaces because the project is considered transportation-oriented development (TOD) because of its proximity to the streetcar and MAX rapid bus transit line.
In fact, the 3G development could become the jumping off point for proposed extension of the streetcar line via the Grand Boulevard viaduct to Berkley Riverfront Park.
“It’s a great TOD location,” Crandall said.
The KCATA signed off on the conceptual plan for the project this week and city planners are expected to begin reviewing the proposal soon.
While the current downtown hotel market is in a severe slump because of the Covid-19 pandemic, Crandall said by the time the project is completed, perhaps in mid-2022, the hospitality economy should be healthy.
He added the proposed hotel would be the first in the River Market as well.
“There are many people who’ve built multi-family there so we think it’s a good multi-family market,” he said.
“A hotel is something nobody has done. Hopefully, the time it opens we’ll be having a different experience with hotels.”
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