UMKC Conservatory of Music considers move to downtown

Issues concerning Downtown as described by the Downtown Council. River to 31st Street, I-35 to Bruce R. Watkins.
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Re: UMKC Conservatory of Music considers move to downtown

Post by KCKev2 » Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:16 pm

Since downtown around the Kauffman Performing Arts Center is dead, it doesn't make sense to continue to "should have would have " thinking. Maybe the under utilized Kauffman gardens along the Brush Creek.

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UMKC Conservatory of Music considers move to downtown

Post by Highlander » Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:50 pm

longviewmo wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:35 am
I was going to suggest across the creek from Nelson Atkins, then realized that was the MRI Global property haha.

Don't think we have to worry about William Jewell becoming a big player, their accreditation is currently on probation.
I'd leave MRI Global alone. It fits in well where it is and doesn't occupy enough space to really satisfy UMKC's needs. I think there is potentially plenty of space available for UMKC to expand. There are still a lot of surface lots that could be built on as garage/building combos. Quite a bit of surface lot space just north and east of Pierson. More space available east of the Biological Science Building and south and west of the Education Building.

In addition to surface lots, I think UMKC is poised to bridge the Troost divide in KC - and without encroaching on the Troostwood neighborhood. The area north of Brush Creek and east of Troost bound by Cleaver to the north and Paseo to the east would be an ideal area for UMKC expansion. Call it North Campus UMKC even owns property there now and the area is occupied only by strip malls, some UMKC ancillary offices, an electrical station (which could be a problem to relocate) and a Gates. It's about an 8 square block area that is low density with 1-3 story buildings and a lot of area occupied by surface lots and even vacant land. UMKC could make a deal with Gates so there restaurant could remain where it is today but inside of a UMKC building. Check it out on Google maps. It's a stones throw from the current campus and very underutilized land. You could throw in the Bluffs at Brush Creek Apts and University Meadows and have an excellent location for another building at UMKC which could be reached from the North Campus by a bridge over the creek and Volker.

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Re: UMKC Conservatory of Music considers move to downtown

Post by shinatoo » Thu Sep 06, 2018 7:13 am

longviewmo wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:35 am
I was going to suggest across the creek from Nelson Atkins, then realized that was the MRI Global property haha.

Don't think we have to worry about William Jewell becoming a big player, their accreditation is currently on probation.
The loss of accreditation has been modified and Jewell is suing the accreditation company. The only thing that still remains is that Jewell doesn't engage in enough "Long-term planning and collection of data". Seems a bit silly to me.
Last edited by shinatoo on Thu Sep 06, 2018 7:32 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: UMKC Conservatory of Music considers move to downtown

Post by shinatoo » Thu Sep 06, 2018 7:17 am

Highlander wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:50 pm
longviewmo wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:35 am
I was going to suggest across the creek from Nelson Atkins, then realized that was the MRI Global property haha.

Don't think we have to worry about William Jewell becoming a big player, their accreditation is currently on probation.
I'd leave MRI Global alone. It fits in well where it is and doesn't occupy enough space to really satisfy UMKC's needs. I think there is potentially plenty of space available for UMKC to expand. There are still a lot of surface lots that could be built on as garage/building combos. Quite a bit of surface lot space just north and east of Pierson. More space available east of the Biological Science Building and south and west of the Education Building.

In addition to surface lots, I think UMKC is poised to bridge the Troost divide in KC - and without encroaching on the Troostwood neighborhood. The area north of Brush Creek and east of Troost bound by Cleaver to the north and Paseo to the east would be an ideal area for UMKC expansion. Call it North Campus UMKC even owns property there now and the area is occupied only by strip malls, some UMKC ancillary offices, an electrical station (which could be a problem to relocate) and a Gates. It's about an 8 square block area that is low density with 1-3 story buildings and a lot of area occupied by surface lots and even vacant land. UMKC could make a deal with Gates so there restaurant could remain where it is today but inside of a UMKC building. Check it out on Google maps. It's a stones throw from the current campus and very underutilized land. You could throw in the Bluffs at Brush Creek Apts and University Meadows and have an excellent location for another building at UMKC which could be reached from the North Campus by a bridge over the creek and Volker.
That whole area was recently rebuilt and now full of viable businesses (not payday loans and rent a centers). They would have to pay a premium at this point. If it fails, five years from now they might be able to pick it up cheap.
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Re: UMKC Conservatory of Music considers move to downtown

Post by chingon » Thu Sep 06, 2018 4:40 pm

The City should just give them Theis Park.

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Re: UMKC Conservatory of Music considers move to downtown

Post by flyingember » Thu Sep 06, 2018 6:15 pm

chingon wrote:
Thu Sep 06, 2018 4:40 pm
The City should just give them Theis Park.
Give after a citywide vote to remove it from the park system.
I would expect that would get a lot of pushback.

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Re: UMKC Conservatory of Music considers move to downtown

Post by aknowledgeableperson » Fri Sep 07, 2018 12:11 am

beautyfromashes wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 10:38 am
kcjak wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 9:55 am
Why would a small, private school sell land to UMKC when they (Rockhurst) are also burdened with the same lack of available land? Small private colleges like Rockhurst typically have significant endowments and operating budgets and higher tuition than larger public universities. That doesn't mean they aren't highly successful financially, even if they are not-for-profit. Ever hear of Duke, Rice, Gonzaga, Tulane, etc.?
I’m suggesting they sell their entire campus precisely because of the shortage of available land. They could receive a very large amount of money that they could use for purchase or construction of a new campus in a location in the metro of their choosing. This has been done by other catholic schools including St Thomas Acquinas which moves to Johnson County. I’m sure the same could be done for a college. It actually might be easier compared to moving kids to to a different HS location. Instead of two colleges battling it out for neighborhood land and tearing down houses, this would allow full expansion as part of consolidation.
Rockhurst High School and then named Rockhurst College shared the same campus until the early 60's when the high school moved to its current location at 93rd and State Line. St. Teresa's High School and Avila College also shared the same campus until the college relocated out south on Wornall in the Red Bridge area. Although they are considered to be Catholic schools they are not supported by the local diocese.
I would be very surprised if Rockhurst University would sale and relocate. Yes, it has on-site residences but it also has a rather large commuter population in both the college level and Master's level. The Jesuits have continued to invest at that Troost location so I doubt they have any interest in moving.

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Re: UMKC Conservatory of Music considers move to downtown

Post by chingon » Fri Sep 07, 2018 11:51 am

flyingember wrote:
Thu Sep 06, 2018 6:15 pm
chingon wrote:
Thu Sep 06, 2018 4:40 pm
The City should just give them Theis Park.
Give after a citywide vote to remove it from the park system.
I would expect that would get a lot of pushback.
Yeah, I understand the reality. But it’s probably as likely as any of the rest of this pipe dream about UMKC becoming a big, important urban university.

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Re: UMKC Conservatory of Music considers move to downtown

Post by Midtownkid » Fri Sep 07, 2018 12:48 pm

chingon wrote:
Thu Sep 06, 2018 4:40 pm
The City should just give them Theis Park.
Don't see how that is a good idea. That is a great park and it is actually well-used.

This forum is full of ideas to get rid of parks and make every corner of the city 'dense'. One thing I love about the city (and most visitors notice) is all the great 'open space', green boulevards, and lack of heavy traffic. I think those are qualities we should emphasize and improve upon, not destroy.

I want to build up density in certain areas. God knows Main Street and Troost could use some good infill. But, I think the Plaza area is pretty much maxed out. It's great as it is, physically. All the open park spaces give that part of the city a slight countryside feel. I would hate to lose that. (leave the tennis courts alone, too).

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Re: UMKC Conservatory of Music considers move to downtown

Post by kcjak » Fri Sep 07, 2018 1:26 pm

There's actually a LOT of unused space and surface lots between Brush Creek and 53rd St.

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Re: UMKC Conservatory of Music considers move to downtown

Post by chingon » Fri Sep 07, 2018 2:20 pm

Midtownkid wrote:
Fri Sep 07, 2018 12:48 pm
chingon wrote:
Thu Sep 06, 2018 4:40 pm
The City should just give them Theis Park.
Don't see how that is a good idea. That is a great park and it is actually well-used.

This forum is full of ideas to get rid of parks and make every corner of the city 'dense'. One thing I love about the city (and most visitors notice) is all the great 'open space', green boulevards, and lack of heavy traffic. I think those are qualities we should emphasize and improve upon, not destroy.

I want to build up density in certain areas. God knows Main Street and Troost could use some good infill. But, I think the Plaza area is pretty much maxed out. It's great as it is, physically. All the open park spaces give that part of the city a slight countryside feel. I would hate to lose that. (leave the tennis courts alone, too).
That park sucks. It’s less used than the Nelson lawn, unless you count geese walking around shitting or mowers. KC has too much fucking parkland, and Theis is prime example.

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Re: UMKC Conservatory of Music considers move to downtown

Post by anonkcmo » Fri Sep 07, 2018 2:31 pm

Theis Park is a joke, never used and is simply open space.
If the right developer or project came along, the city should seriously consider the exchange.

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Re: UMKC Conservatory of Music considers move to downtown

Post by TrolliKC » Fri Sep 07, 2018 6:18 pm

anonkcmo wrote:
Fri Sep 07, 2018 2:31 pm
Theis Park is a joke, never used and is simply open space.
If the right developer or project came along, the city should seriously consider the exchange.
I disagree - We have often had picnics or just hang out here. We have also hired someone to set up bubble soccer a couple of times for my daughter’s birthday parties on Theis. Kansas City needs more parks interspersed among dense development. If anything the existing parks (including the underutilized Swope and Penn) should be rethought to maximize usage but not paved over.

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Re: UMKC Conservatory of Music considers move to downtown

Post by Midtownkid » Fri Sep 07, 2018 8:17 pm

anonkcmo wrote:
Fri Sep 07, 2018 2:31 pm
Theis Park is a joke, never used and is simply open space.
If the right developer or project came along, the city should seriously consider the exchange.
I was thinking of Southmoreland Park when I said it was well used. Still, I would never advocate for anything other than landscape improvements at Theis Park. The view from the steps of the Nelson to Brush Creek should be preserved. It's a great vista. You could never get that back.

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Re: UMKC Conservatory of Music considers move to downtown

Post by Highlander » Fri Sep 07, 2018 10:12 pm

Midtownkid wrote:
Fri Sep 07, 2018 8:17 pm
anonkcmo wrote:
Fri Sep 07, 2018 2:31 pm
Theis Park is a joke, never used and is simply open space.
If the right developer or project came along, the city should seriously consider the exchange.
I was thinking of Southmoreland Park when I said it was well used. Still, I would never advocate for anything other than landscape improvements at Theis Park. The view from the steps of the Nelson to Brush Creek should be preserved. It's a great vista. You could never get that back.
Absolutely agreed. I don't think Kansas Citians will part with their urban parks all that easily anyway. Including the tennis courts at the plaza.
Like I said, there's plenty of room for UMKC to expand - surface lots first and there are walking-distance-away parcels that could be acquired.

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Re: UMKC Conservatory of Music considers move to downtown

Post by flyingember » Sat Sep 08, 2018 10:20 am

Doesn’t even need to be literal walking distance.

With the train coming and their history of free bus passes they could start to infill along Main rather easily. Buying that lot at 44th and put select offices and graduate studies in a new building there would be a smart move.

It’s not uncommon you’ll see most of the IT dept or a research center placed in a building off campus like this as they grow, to turn existing space on the main campus into classrooms.

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