Port KC Approves $60M Riverfront Apartment Plan, Summer Work Start

The 353-unit CORE apartment project now being built by Northpoint Development is part of a new boom in construction along the downtown riverfront near Berkley Park. (Rendering by NSPJ)

(Aug. 12 Editor’s note: Construction began July 21)

By Kevin Collison

NorthPoint Development plans to break ground on a 353-unit apartment complex near Berkley Riverfront Park this summer after the Port KC board unanimously approved incentives for the project Monday.

The $60 million project, which was first announced in October, will substantially increase the growing residential population near Berkley Park, and is expected to boost a plan to extend the streetcar to that area.

“This helps bring critical mass to the riverfront residential market,” said Mark Pomerenke, chief investment officer at NorthPoint.

“This will help continue momentum for the planned pedestrian bridge along the Grand viaduct and the future plan to extend the streetcar. We hope our project is a catalyst.”

The Port KC board approved a revenue bond for up to $49 million to help finance the deal. The bond will be repaid by NorthPoint and its financial partner in the project, Northwestern Mutual.

A plan to extend the streetcar to the riverfront using the Grand Boulevard viaduct also includes building a parallel pedestrian/bike bridge. (Image courtesy Confluence)

NorthPoint also received a 25-year property tax abatement: 75 percent years one- through five; 60 percent, 6-10; 45 percent, 11-15; 25 percent, 16-20, and 10 percent years 21 through 25.

This will be the second, large apartment development in the Berkley Park area in recent years. The 410-unit Union at Berkley Riverfront Park opened in 2018. Other apartment projects are being discussed as well.

And in an important public policy goal, the NorthPoint project will reserve 15 percent of its units as affordable housing with rents for a mix of studio and one-bedroom apartments going for $950 per month.

The average rent of a one-bedroom, market-rate apartment is expected to be about $1,200 per month. The most expensive two-bedroom units are expected to go for $2,200 per month.

Rendering of courtyard amenities at NorthPoint apartment project. (Image from NPSJ)

Jon Stephens, Port KC president and CEO, said two of the other riverfront apartment projects being discussed with his agency would be affordable, but their progress depends on Missouri renewing its low-incoming housing tax credit program.

The NorthPoint development is planned for an eight-acre site that was owned by Port KC just east of the Bar K dog park, restaurant and bar. As part of the deal, NorthPoint purchased the land for $4.25 million.

As part of its proposal, NorthPoint plans to build a private street through its development that would include 70 parking spaces for public use, including Bar K patrons.

Pomerenke said the first apartments should be completed by Fall 2021. The entire development should be finished by Fall 2022.

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