KANSAS CITY, Mo. - The parking lot at 13th Street and Walnut Street in downtown Kansas City, Mo., can barely hold 50 cars - but in three years, it will be converted into 23-story, high-end apartment building with 250 units.
The Cordish Company is planning a massive residential development and renovation near the Power and Light District.
"It's the type of project that Kansas City, certainly downtown Kansas City, hasn't seen before…more consistent with high rise residential buildings in Dallas or Chicago," said Nick Benjamin, executive director of the Power and Light District.
In addition to constructing what will be the tallest residential tower built from the ground up, the Cordish, which also developed the Power and Light District, will be renovating the Midland Tower at 13th and Baltimore to add 68 new apartments.
"There's been a crying need of high-end apartments in the downtown area," said Kansas City Council member Jan Marcason. "It's very very exciting. Maybe this is a sign that the economy is finally turning around."
The demand to live downtown made it very difficult for new resident Russell Rice to find a place to live.
"Everyone's looking for a place downtown, and there's just not a whole lot of places available," he explained.
Marcason says 98 percent of the rental properties in downtown are occupied, and according to Benjamin, the number of people living downtown has tripled in the last seven years.
"There's more demand than there are units," Benjamin said. "Which suggests it's the right time to start building."
The City of Kansas City subsidized $8 million for the project. In return, the project is expected to generate $37 million dollars in tax revenue for the city during the 25 years after completion, according to Benjamin.
The project is set to break ground within a year and should be completed by 2015, Benjamin said. Units will rent from $1,200 to $1,500 a month.
Copyright 2012 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.