Downtown Update from Jason - June 25, 2019
One of the largest issues facing KCK as we work to revitalize this community is housing. Whether it’s increasing the stock of quality affordable housing, doing smart development on new housing, or making sure our residents can afford to stay in their homes, the Unified Government and all our community partners are working on ideas and solutions to maintain, improve and increase the stock of good housing for our residents. A wide array of housing choices will make KCK more attractive to the next generation and ensure the vitality of this city for the future.
Downtown KCK is not immune to these pressures, but the application is a bit different. As a dense, vibrant downtown, the types of housing that can be built here are limited in nature and presents unique challenges to getting development done. Downtown living is increasing in popularity, especially among young adults, as well as with adults who no longer need the space to house children. We are continuing to look to welcome projects that bring more people downtown and are thankful for the creative folk who imagine the future in new ways.
That being said, there are a couple of housing projects in or next to downtown that are worth watching. The first just broke ground this month – The Boulevard Lofts. This project, at 8th and Washington (just in the Douglass-Sumner Neighborhood), bring 60 units of dense multi-family housing right on the edge of Downtown, redeveloping a difficult and long-underutilized block. The second project is a reuse of the historic YMCA building on 8th St., which will be converted into senior housing. This development is just in its early stages, but bears watching (I certainly will be).
I am very excited for Downtown to develop this third way of getting more people downtown (working, shopping, living).