UMKC has reached an agreement in principal with Van Trust Real Estate and DST Realty to construct a mixed-use development on university-owned property, located directly west of the main administrative building at 5115 Oak St. It is currently occupied by parking lots 39 and 47 and the 51 Street Annex building.
The proposal calls for the university to lease the property to Van Trust and DST, which would be responsible for construction and management of the development. The plan calls for a grocery store and approximately 150 units of market-rate rental housing, also including space for relocation of the existing UMKC student health and counseling center to the project. The center is in the 4825 Troost building. We have been told that the developer has a lease agreement with Whole Foods Market to operate the grocery.
The developer is currently engaged in due diligence process prior to finalizing the agreement with the University and other parties. Prior to reaching this agreement, the university sought input from key stakeholders including student, faculty and neighborhood groups.
The project supports one of the six primary goals of the university’s strategic plan, specifically goal number six - “Promote research and economic development.” The university believes the project will create jobs and enhance the quality of life in South Plaza neighborhoods.
The affected parking lots will continue to be operated in their present form until construction begins. The new Cherry Street Parking Structure, slated to open in early August, was designed to account for the need to replace those parking spaces should the long-discussed development of the site come to fruition.