By Kevin Collison
Oak Properties has tweaked the former Ashland apartment development planned for Third and Grand across from the City Market, adding eight units and halving the amount of retail space.
Andrew Ganahl, a representative for Oaks Properties, the Minneapolis-based developer, said construction is expected to begin late this year at the development site that has been languishing for two years.
The City Council approved the project, which did not seek tax incentives, in early 2018. KC Commercial razed a building at 110 E. Third St. two years ago to make way for what originally a 94-unit project, but construction never began.
Oak Properties bought the development site from KC Commercial Realty Group about two months ago. The location is next to the Third and Grand streetcar stop.
Ganahl said the plan now calls for 102 apartments and 2,600 square-feet of retail. The retail space originally planned for Third and Walnut now will be used for two apartments. The retail space at Third and Grand remains part of the plan.
He said the appearance of the building, five floors of residential above two levels of parking, remains relatively unchanged and NSPJ Architects of Prairie Village is still the designer. Hausmann Construction of Lincoln, Neb. will be the contractor.
The $25 million apartment project, which has been rebranded Oaks River Market, will remain a market-rate development. About 10 percent of the units will be two-bedrooms, 10 percent will be studios and the remainder one-bedroom.
Ganahl said Norm Bjornnes, the head of Oak Properties, hopes to introduce an amenity he’s offered at his Minneapolis developments, a shared electric car that can used by residents at the project. That idea depends on insurance requirements.
Ganahl and Jeff McMahon are assisting Bjornnes and his daughter Alex with their Kansas City investment., If the project breaks ground by the end of the year, it should be completed by spring 2024.
Oak Properties also purchased the Centropolis on Grand apartment development in the River Market from KC Commercial Realty in February. That 56-unit project opened at 501 Grand in 2016.
The Oaks River Market project is less than a half-block away from a 246-unit development being pursued at a public parking lot at the northeast corner of Third and Grand.
That $60 million proposal recently won approval for tax incentives and will be considered by the City Council.
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