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Denver Developer Proposing $25 Million River Market Office Project

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2 minute read

Updated July 10: More details this week at Port KC committee meeting. Project would have two levels of parking with 86 spaces and developer Craig Slawson told members he’s in discussions with two potential office tenants, one from out-of-state that would employ 60- 100 people.

Plans to request a 25-year property tax abatement, exact breakdown to be determined. Would like to finish project by spring 2021.

By Kevin Collison

Denver developer Craig Slawson is proposed a $25 million office project in the River Market, saying it’s time to begin infill projects for the extensive property holdings he acquired in 2017.

The five-story, 64,000 square-building is in the pre-leasing stage, and Slawson said his firm, Epoch Developments, will submit a formal development proposal to city development agencies when he has obtained enough viable tenants.

He plans to seek tax incentives to help finance the endeavor, but has not determined the exact request at this point.

Slawson has brought several retail and food tenants to properties he’s acquired along Delaware Street including Betty Rae’s Ice Cream, Made in KC, Our Daily Nada bookstore and cafè and Tribe restaurant.

He’s now ready to pursue the office project on what’s now a surface parking lot at the northwest corner of Third and Delaware.

“I’ve done the food and beverage on the street, now it’s time for infills,” he said. “I know the market is ready for it. People are looking back to the core and I want to be ready for that.

“I’d like to have creative office users here. Typically, in an environment like the River Market, you see creative industries coming back to the city.”

The proposed Epoch Development office building would be designed to complement with nearby historic buildings. (Image from Slaggie Architects)

Slawson’s announcement comes on the heels of news that another River Market office plan has stalled.

A proposed 200,000 square-foot office development a couple blocks away at Third and Grand was cast in doubt when the Kansas City Transportation Authority decided not to extend an agreement with Briarcliff Development.

The KCATA plans to seek new proposals for its Third and Grand property, currently a parking lot, and Briarcliff officials say they will resubmit their office project proposal to the agency.

As is the case with Third and Grand, the proposed Slawson office development is on the downtown streetcar line.

In fact, the location was the site of the former Victoria Station restaurant, which occupied a cluster of several train cars there during the River Quay days of the 1970s.

A press release announcing the proposal said the planned building would complement nearby historic structures. In addition to office space, a restaurant with outdoor seating and a fitness club are contemplated for the first floor.

The development would locate its parking underground and possibly have a rooftop penthouse suite with a public rooftop venue as well.

Project partners include Slaggie Architects and Catalyst Ventures.

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