The Redevelopment of Kansas City’s Historic West Bottoms

The Historic West Bottoms lies where the Missouri River and the Kansas River meet. It is one of Kansas City’s oldest and most recognized neighborhoods, filled with a rich history. The West Bottoms were first and foremost a place for trade for the Indians and French Trappers.  The railroads then soon swooped in, making the city flourish with the establishment of the stockyards in 1871. Then in 1903, the West Bottoms were hit by the Great Flood, wiping out the investments into schools, churches, and homes. Industrial investments remained strong until after WWII, when the West Bottoms took an economic hit and thousands of jobs were lost. The area took another hit in 1951 with a huge flood, forcing companies to move out and never to return. Over the years, the area had not been revitalized.

Flash forward to 2022, and SomeraRoad has assembled 26 acres of land in the West Bottoms with generational mast plans to revitalize the historic area. While planning is still in the early phases, they are currently calling for 1,238 apartments, hospitality, mixed-uses, a pocket park, courtyard, and open-space amenities through the end of 2035. Preliminary plans include:

  1. Phase One: Demolition of the Weld Wheel building, making space for roughly 266 apartments, conversion of the Moline Plow Building to 127 apartments, adaptive mixed-use reuse of several buildings on Union Ave, a 50-room hotel conversion of the Avery building, an open park in place of an empty parking lot and implementation of 520 parking spaces.
  2. Phase Two: Building demolition for structures NW of 11th St & Mulberry making room for a 308-apartment development and mixed-uses.
  3. Phase Three: The Crane Co. building will be converted to 31-apartments and 236 multifamily units will be developed to the east of 1105 Hickory St.
  4. Phase Four: Remaining apartments will be completed at former Weld Wheel site, adaptive mixed-use reuse for 45-apartments at 1320 W 12th, mixed-use revamp of 1222 W 12th & 1000 W 12th, construction begins for 72-apartment project at surface lots NW of Mulberry & Union, NW St. Louis Ave & Santa Fe St, and demolition of a building northwest of 11th & Hickory for 27 new apartments.
  5. Phase Five: Buildings 1323 & 1331 Union will become 54-apartments

We look with much anticipation to what the next chapter of the West Bottoms will be. AREA will serve as consultants to SomeraRoad on the redevelopment.

To read the full article in the Kansas City Business Journal, click here.