Archive for Thursday, February 26, 2015

Wyandotte County’s housing growth continues

February 26, 2015

Western Wyandotte County is becoming more than just the place to be — it’s the place to live.

In the last two years, the retail, entertainment and other commercial growth in the Village West area has brought new apartment complexes that are filling almost as soon as construction is complete.

“We’re really excited about what’s happening there,” said Greg Kindle, president of the Wyandotte County Economic Development Council. “It’s a very hip location to be — there’s always something to do, something to see and something to be a part of. So that, I think, is really driving a lot of the opportunity there.”

The Village West Luxury Apartments, 110th Street and Delaware Parkway, broke ground on its first 305-unit phase in early 2013, and with vacancy rates almost nonexistent on the first phase once it was completed, developers Northpointe announced it would begin construction of a second, $34 million, 310-unit phase in March 2014.

The rapid infill of this complex, along with the 228-unit Delaware Ridge complex at State Avenue and 130th Street, inspired Triple R Properties LLC to propose a $64 million development at 118th Street and State Avenue in Bonner Springs.

“There are unbelievably low vacancy rates (in Village West-area complexes),” Korb Maxwell, legal representative for Triple R, told the Bonner Springs City Council last month when they considered a resolution of support for the Triple R development proposal. “Actually, what’s somewhat happening at the moment is some of the Delaware Ridge is showing a little bit of vacancy, but it’s not because people are leaving the area. It’s because they’re going to the Northpointe, newest, nicest product, so they’re back-filling Delaware Ridge.”

The mixed-use development is proposed to include 35 acres of up to 55 villas, 21 acres for apartments with up to 396 units, and 17 acres for about 85,000 square feet of commercial development.

More multi-family could still be in the works. A 248-unit, gated apartment complex in Bonner Springs was proposed to begin construction last year near Kansas Highway 7 and Kansas Avenue, though it has been delayed.

There even may be some movement on the much-delayed, 592-unit complex first approved in 2007 in Edwardsville; Michael Webb, city manager, said the city received some contact from the developers in January.

It’s not just multi-family housing that has seen a boost; 181 single-family building permits were issued in the county last year.

With eight consecutive years of population growth, the county is reversing the trend of residents moving to other areas that began 25 years ago. Kindle said the county’s overall population is getting back to census levels in the 1990s.

To keep that moving forward, the Unified Government is continuing new residential construction incentives within Kansas City, Kan., allowing permit fee reductions and waivers that could reduce new construction costs by about $5,000 per home.

“We’re going to continue to push to make sure that all the subdivisions that started just before the recession are finished,” Kindle said.

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