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Plaza Purchase: Here is what’s in store for the shopping district

The City of KCMO and the Plaza’s newest owners held a joint conference detailing the district’s future.

country club plaza press conference hp village partners owner and mayor q at podium speaking

HP Village Management has big plans for our Plaza.

Photo by KCtoday

Your Burning Questions

We’re sure you heard the news — the Plaza is now the property of HP Village Management.

New ownership may mean a new day for the ailing district, but many Kansas Citians are concerned that a changing of the guard won’t necessarily save our Crown Jewel.

In order to address these concerns, the Dallas-based management group held a joint press conference with Mayor Q detailing upcoming changes + answering all of your burning questions.

What kinds of stores can we expect?

HP Village Management President Ray Washburne says you’ll see a mix of high end + affordable retailers, with an emphasis on local business tenants.

“What makes this a successful center isn’t national retailers, it’s the local retail [and] food + beverage scene,” he said. (We’ve known this for a long time: what’s made in KC is always best.)

In addition to sourcing local retailers, HP Village Management plans to target luxury brands, namely Gucci and Louis Vuitton.

Fun fact: According to Washburne, the KC metro is the largest market missing the aforementioned designer giants.

How will you make the Plaza feel safer?

While there is already police presence patrolling the Plaza 24/7, the new owners plan to add more police walking the sidewalks and install ~100 additional cameras.

These cameras will be able to read license plates and are intended to help cut down on loitering + petty crimes.

How about the Nordstrom lot?

Washburne said the empty eyesore of a lot where a Nordstrom was originally slated will likely see several mixed-use office and retail buildings rise in its place. These buildings will be designed to match the Plaza’s original Spanish-style architecture.

empty Nordstrom lot birds eye view

Now known as the “Nordstrom lot,” this space used to feature movie screens connected by a sky bridge.

Photo from Google Earth

What will happen with the empty movie theater?

“That whole business has gone away,” said Washburne. “But we have had entertainment businesses reach out to us. We’re [not] putting in pinball places and things like that, but there are a lot of higher-end entertainment that are big footprints that would like to come in.”

Any guesses, KC? Editor Charmaine has her fingers crossed for a Meow Wolf.

Will you add a grocery store?

While a full-sized shop isn’t on the vision board, Washburne says the company has plans to “bring back a small grocery store,” like a convenience store.

How are you going to address the aging infrastructure?

Mayor Q says that the city will make the Plaza, Brush Creek, and its surrounding parks a higher priority from here on out. The city will be using a public works package to make the revival happen.

As for HP Village Management, it say their funds will focus on repairs of the 100-year-old buildings’ interiors.

(In case you didn’t know — the buildings are owned by HP Village Management, but all sidewalks + roads are managed by the City of KCMO.)

What other exciting plans are there?

Washburne says a boutique hotel may soon grace the property, and the company will work with local neighborhood groups to make sure history is preserved while pulling the Plaza into the new century.

“We have enjoyed meeting and hearing from Kansas Citians who are equally passionate about restoring this treasured community asset,” Washburne said. “We are eager to transform the Plaza back into a place that everyone can be proud of and enjoy for many more generations to come.”

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