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ShowMeKC

Downtown Arena

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A downtown arena has been proposed since about 2001 or 2000 and now may actually become a reality. City Hall is planning to replace Kemper Arena and build a downtown arena at 13th and Grand. The arena, although seen in the Kansas City Live! renderings, is not a part of that project. But H&R Block have been given the naming rights to the arena if actually built.

The arena would have become a reality quicker if downtown state funding called MODESTA hadn't restricted certain arena sizes.

This will add alot to the south loop entertainment district which should include the PAC, Ballroom, Arena, KC Live! and in the future, the expanded Bartle Hall. (not to mention the current one) Also in the entertainment district is the Municiple Auditorium.

You can see the planned arena off the right in this Kansas City Live! rendering:

Kansas%20City%20Liveexhalf.jpg

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Mayor Kay Barnes said that she would not allow the arena plans to fall through while she is mayor... IMO that's a good sign.

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Mayor Kay Barnes said that she would not allow the arena plans to fall through while she is mayor... IMO that's a good sign.

It will certainly help to ensure that it will eventually get built, however nothing is guaranteed. With the amount of consturction going on in KC right now though, I really couldn't see the arena plans getting dropped.

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It's a good sign because in my opinion, she is trustworthy and honest. Although a few (or couple?) people from KC might disagree lol.

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An honest & trustworthy politician? LOL. Yeah right!

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Article in todays newpaper and there is a special mention in it ;)

As time passes, hopes for arena dim

Financing questions continue to bedevil downtown project

By JEFFREY SPIVAK and LYNN HORSLEY The Kansas City Star

One year ago this month, Kansas City's plan for a new downtown arena was supposed to be unveiled.

Today, it still is not ready, and there is growing skepticism that Kansas City can even do the project.

The arena appears caught in a financial bind. Mayor Kay Barnes has promised to build it without a general tax increase or public referendum. Yet consultants and planners can't put together a solid financing plan without significant public funding, according to several officials involved in the discussions.

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On the news, I heard some guy from a team called the Hawks (maybe ATL Hawks?) who said they would come to KC if we built a new arena. He said we could try to build an arena better than Dallas' (we have the best sports architectural firm in the country, HOK Sports)

He also encouraged the mayor to build the arena saying Kemper arena needs to be replaced.

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Sprint is now looking to help with the arena plan:

Sprint in the mix for arena funding

Firm reportedly considers naming rights

By KEVIN COLLISON

The Kansas City Star

Kansas City Mayor Kay Barnes is working on a downtown arena plan that would involve voter-approved fees and surcharges and possibly support from a corporate white knight

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On the news, I heard some guy from a team called the Hawks (maybe ATL Hawks?) who said they would come to KC if we built a new arena. He said we could try to build an arena better than Dallas' (we have the best sports architectural firm in the country, HOK Sports)

He also encouraged the mayor to build the arena saying Kemper arena needs to be replaced.

On the news, I heard some guy from a team called the Hawks (maybe ATL Hawks?) who said they would come to KC if we built a new arena. He said we could try to build an arena better than Dallas' (we have the best sports architectural firm in the country, HOK Sports)

He also encouraged the mayor to build the arena saying Kemper arena needs to be replaced.

Ouch! would they really spend more than $420 million on an arena(What the Mavs/Starz/City of Dallas paid). It's still the most expensive in the NBA. And didn't the Hawks just build Phillips not too long ago? Their fan support has sucked though as they haven't been very good. Wouldn't be surprised if they moved from an attendance standpoint, but that arena would probably keep them there.

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From the KC Business Journal:

Forsee: Sprint would support arena Downtown

Sprint Corp. would support a downtown arena, possibly by buying naming rights, if such a project gets ample support, CEO Gary Forsee said Tuesday.

 

Kansas City Mayor Kay Barnes is developing plans to help finance a new arena at 14th Street and Grand Boulevard. She hasn't made any of the contents of that proposal public.

"We're very interested in doing our part," Forsee said in a question-and-answer session with reporters after Sprint's annual shareholders meeting at the Overland Park Convention Center. It was Forsee's first public acknowledgment of the issue.

"We are interested in an arena project, and we want to be sure that this is a project that has a broad base of Kansas City support, both on the political side and on the business leadership side," Forsee said. "There are lots of projects clamoring for dollars in our area."

Kansas City-based tax preparation giant H&R Block Inc. (NYSE: HRB) will have the first shot at naming rights for an arena in accordance with its agreement with the city to move its corporate headquarters Downtown.

Sprint's interest represents a change of heart for Forsee, who sounded noncommittal when asked about the subject during a January luncheon at the Central Exchange.

He noted then that Overland Park-based Sprint (NYSE: FON, PCS) was seeking to have a greater voice on community issues but that it wouldn't have to extend to "dollars or naming rights" associated with that.

Sprint ranks No. 1 on The Business Journal's list of area public companies.

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As reported today in the Star, since KC is just about the sports architecture capital, a whole lot of our sports design companies are banding together to try to design the new arena that is planned for downtown at 14th and Grand.

Since so many are banding together, this promises a very good quality arena.

Companies like CDFM2, Crawford Architects, Ellerbe Beckett, HOK Sports, and Heinlein Schrock Stearns.

They said the arena would probably be from 18,000 seats to 20,000 seats. And could very likely be home to the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame.

Our Mayor said that it doesn't matter how well designed it it, the city will not spend a whole lot of money on the arena...

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Mayor K Barnes, along with AEG, Sprint, and others, announced the plans for the new arena in downtown KC.

It is going to be from 18,000 seats to 20,000 seats and will cost about $250 million.

They plan to open the arena in 2007.

sprintarena.jpg

74812421915.jpg

It is going to be called Sprint Center.

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I also forgot to mention some of KC's top architectural firms will help design it. KC's architectural firms that want to participate have built 24 of the last 28 newest arenas.

They are also planning (AEG out of Denver) to bring either NHL or NBA back to Kansas City.

This will also help Cordish's Kansas City Live gain some of the top entertainment tenants.

Because we will have our entertainment district, Sprint Center, The New Performing Arts Center, Bartle Hall, the New Bartle Hall Ballroom, etc... (of course, all of those are in planning or funding)

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It has been approved by the City Council and has been placed on the August Ballot.

Plans are to increase hotel and car rental taxes/fees.

They plan to finish the arena by 2007. (1 year after the 2nd phase of KC Live! goes u/c)

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The "Dream Team" a group of 4 architecture firms in KC who are competing against other "teams" to design the new arena now say they can have a basic design done by mid-july. They have stated that if they are selected then the voters will be able to see the design before the vote in August. Although the four firms are rivals, they have teamed up and the results should be extremely pleasing. They have stated that the arena needs to reflect Kansas City. The four firms are HOK Sports, Ellerbe Beckett, Heinlein Schrock Stearns, and CDFM2. HOK and EB are two of the nation's top sports architectural firms and both are located in KC, although EB only has a branch in KC, HOK Sports is entirely located in KC.

They are competing against the team of Frank Gehry and Crawford Architects. FG has never designed a sports arena before.

I personally doubt Gehry and Crawford Architects will get it, although Crawford Architects are in KC, Gehry hasn't done merely anything in Kansas City, and doesn't know our city as well as the 4 other firms do.

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That looks like a beautiful project for KC. I think it will be a nice area when it is complete.

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It seems like the Mayor prefers Gehry rather than the dream teams, but I don't want Gehry designing the arena for multiple reasons.

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