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Crescendo Project to Add Affordable Housing Near Downtown

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2 minute read

By Kevin Collison

A $10.6 million development plan that would add 39 affordable apartments to the Wendell Phillips neighborhood is being planned by the same developer who has built similar projects near downtown.

Brinshore Development is teaming with the Urban Neighborhood Initiative on what’s called the UNI Crescendo project. It calls for 10 townhome-style apartment buildings on the east side of Highland Avenue between 24th and 25th streets.

Brinshore developed the Paseo Gateway initiative. It included several projects that added about 300 affordable apartments to The Paseo and Independence Avenue vicinity near downtown and is currently developing a 62-unit project at the Samuel D. Rodgers Health Center.

The proposed Crescendo project has been approved for $513,000 in low-income housing tax credits from the federal government and the Missouri Housing Development Commission (MHDC).

The Crescendo development would be on the east side of Highland Avenue between 24th and 25th streets. (Site plan by Rosemann & Associates)

The developer also is seeking a 10-year property tax abatement from a city development agency and sales tax break on construction materials.

“We’ve been working on this for several years now and are very happy to receive a tax credit award from MHDC last June to be able to move forward,” Kathleen Bole of Brinshore told board members of the Land Clearance Redevelopment Authority (LCRA) last week.

The development would include one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments and rent for households earning between 30 percent and 80 percent of the area media income (AMI). A one-bedroom at the 30 percent AMI level could rent for as low as $355 per month.

“We’re very happy to be providing a range of affordable units from the very low-income side and a little bit higher kind of reaching that missing middle,” Bole said.

The location of the Crescendo development is currently a wooded lot.

The project calls for the construction of 10, three-story buildings on what’s now a wooded lot facing Highland Avenue. One building would include a community center and offices. The property had been controlled by the Land Bank of Kansas City.

The size of the units would be 830 square-feet for a one-bedroom; 920-square feet for a two-bedroom unit, and 1,665 square-feet for a three. The architect is Rosemann & Associates.

The Crescendo plan has the support of City Councilwoman Melissa Robinson, who’s district includes the area, and the Kansas City Public School District.

The Wendell Phillips neighborhood is near the 18th and Vine District and the Hospital Hill area, and was included in the new Imagine Downtown KC Strategic Plan released last week by the Downtown Council.

The LCRA board agreed to seek a request for proposals for the location and expects the UNI Crescendo LLC will be the only respondent. The agency then is expected to approve that proposal at its meeting next month.

Construction is expected to begin by late spring with completion by the summer of 2023.

A chart showing the planned income levels and rents at Crescendo. (Chart from LCRA presentation)

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