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Apartment complex to be built on site of fire-damaged Mission Bowl

mission bowl apartments.png
Posted at 5:30 AM, Oct 27, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-29 22:27:39-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Construction crews began demolishing the old Mission Bowl building at 5399 Martway Street in Mission, Kansas, this fall to make way for a new 5-story luxury apartment complex.

A fire destroyed the bowling alley in 2015. The building had sat empty and in disrepair since the fire as several lawsuits played out.

The apartments, which do not yet have a name, will feature a work-live kind of office-residence combination on the ground floor and will include a rooftop pool for residents.

It will have approximately 165 units, made up of a mixture of studio, one-bedroom and two-bedroom layouts. There will be small fitness park and dog park on site along the Rock Creek Trail. Both parks will be open to the public.

“We really wanted to engage Martway [Street] and create a kind of live-work atmosphere on Martway,” Banks Floodman, with Sunflower Development Group which is leading the project, said.

Floodman said the project did not want compete against, but rather compliment existing retail in Mission Mart directly to the north of the project site.

In exchange for tax incentives, the developer agreed to get the building LEED-Silver certified [Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design] and set aside 20% of the complex’s units for affordable or workforce housing.

City Councilwoman Sollie Flora helped broker the LEED certification aspect of the deal, calling it a “green” incentive.

“I think that made it a win-win all around,” Flora said. “And kind of set a new baseline for folks coming in looking for tax incentives.”

Flora is facing fellow council member Arcie Rothrock in November’s election to become Mission’s next mayor, as Ron Appletoft is not seeking reelection.

The tax incentives will come in the form of the city reimbursing a portion of the development’s property tax payments each of the next 20 years. The developer will use that money to pay off the cost of acquiring the property, demolishing the bowling alley and other blight-reduction measures.

Ben Chociej’s backyard backs up to the redevelopment site. He said he reached out to developers as early as he could to make sure neighbors had a voice in the process.

“Just knowing that the developer was willing to listen when we said, ‘Hey, we have privacy concerns, we want it to look good, we don’t want to stare at something ugly, help us out.’ They were receptive to that,” he said.

Chociej is now running for city council against fellow newcomer Ray Ruecker.

“The neighbors are here long before us and long after us,” Floodman said. “So we never have the mentality that we’re going to propose a development without talking to the major constituents in the area.”

The Locale apartment complex about a half mile away from the Mission Bowl location opened in March 2020 and is now 97% occupied, according to Flora.

She pointed out multi-level apartment buildings are one of the few options available for the city of less than 2.5 square miles to add housing stock necessary to support the business and economic side of the city.

Crews were able to salvage some wood from the original lanes in the bowling alley which they will incorporate into the apartment complex.

The apartments should open in Nov. 2023.