Crown Center Marketing Vacant Property as Office Tower Location

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An illustration of a potential office building on the property being marketed by Hallmark. (Image from Newmark Grubb Zimmer)

By Kevin Collison

Hallmark is marketing another large piece of undeveloped Crown Center property, this one a 2.7-acre site northeast of 27th and Main streets that’s designated as a potential office building location.

Newmark Grubb Zimmer real estate announced last week it had been selected by Hallmark to seek a developer and/or tenant for the site, according to a press release. It’s the fourth undeveloped Crown Center parcel to be sold or marketed in recent years.

The master plan for the newly-listed property calls for it to be developed as a high-rise, Class A office building with up to 400,000 square feet of space, according to NGZ. The plan also calls for a potential garage with up to 1,500 spaces.

The property also is adjacent to the proposed streetcar extension on Main.

“The site is immediately south of the existing 2600 Grand office building and park, and is ideally suited to become a headquarters location, offering amazing views of downtown Kansas City, Liberty Memorial and Union Station,” the NGZ release stated.

The last office building to be developed at Crown Center was the 24-story tower at 2555 Grand occupied by the Shook Hardy & Bacon law firm. It was completed in 2003.

According to the release, Crown Center Redevelopment is interested in either selling the property to a developer or constructing a building itself to fit a tenant’s needs and specifications.

Hallmark is marketing this property for a potential office building.

The land is just west of another 4.4-acre undeveloped site that Crown Center listed for sale in early February. It’s being described as a location for a mid-rise apartment development.

Crown Center also is selling a two-block site in the East Crossroads area to Milhaus development for a 350-unit apartment project.

In 2013, Milhaus purchase a site from Crown Center at 27th and McGee and is developing the $68 million Gallerie apartment development slated to begin occupancy this fall.

In an interview earlier this year, Stacey Paine, Hallmark executive president of real estate and president of Crown Center Redevelopment, said that in deciding to offer more of its undeveloped land for sale, the firm is responding to an “active” downtown real estate market.

“The trend is, we believe Kansas City is in a good place now with a lot of activity and interest in the market,” Paine said. “It’s a good time for the land we have to be in peoples’ minds as a place to build.”

The downtown office market has become more attractive to developers as vacancies have declined in recent years thanks to the conversion of many older office buildings into residential and other projects.

Attendees at an office summit sponsored by the Downtown Council last summer were optimistic new office construction could occur soon.

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