By Kevin Collison
The developers of the Uptown Lofts project are moving ahead with a planned hotel at the corner of Valentine and Broadway at a faster pace than originally envisioned, winning approval for incentives from a city development agency last week.
Construction on the 95- to 120-room hotel could begin by the end of the year following approval of 25-year property tax abatement and sales tax exemption on construction materials by the Planned Industrial Expansion Authority.
The Uptown hotel project was one of two, midtown Kansas City developments the PIEA approved for tax incentive help. The other is the planned redevelopment of the former Red Cross office building at 211 W. Armour into 61 apartments by Mac Properties.
The Uptown hotel project is part of a larger redevelopment plan intended to replace the struggling Uptown Shoppes retail center in midtown Kansas City.
The PIEA approved a 25-year property tax abatement last November for a 223-unit apartment project at the shopping center site called Uptown Lofts.
At the time the Uptown apartment project were approved, the developer, Sunflower Development Group, told the agency a boutique hotel was contemplated as a second phase with no definite schedule.
But last week, Banks Floodman, Sunflower’s director of business development, told PIEA board members that a hotel operator has been identified and an application has been made with the Marriott hotel company for one of its brands.
“We’re excited that phase two has moved forward faster than anticipated,” he said.
The redevelopment plan for the Uptown Shoppes property has neighborhood support of the because it will replace the underperforming retail center and will provide 380 more parking spaces for the Uptown Theater across the street.
The Uptown Lofts plan calls for 47,720 square-feet of existing retail to be renovated with an additional 4,680 square-feet of new commercial space built.
Much of the renovated retail space will be used as a clubhouse and other amenities for apartment residents. The architect is TreanorHL.
Construction of the apartments is expected to begin in early to mid-July, Floodman said. The hotel could break ground within the next six months.
The PIEA board granted the hotel project a 25-year property tax abatement following the new Council guidelines, 75 percent for 10 years and 37.5 percent for 15.
The $11.7 million redevelopment of the vacant Red Cross building by Mac Properties is receiving a 10-year, 100 percent property tax abatement as well as a sales tax exemption on construction materials.
It will be a continuation of Mac Properties extensive redevelopment along Armour Boulevard.
Over the past decade, Mac has redeveloped 28 historic buildings, creating 1,700 apartments in a 15-block corridor along Armour from Campbell Street to Broadway.
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