Plaza move-ins (ongoing)

Discuss items in the urban core outside of Downtown as described above. Everything in the core including the east side (18th & Vine area), Plaza, Westport, Brookside, Valentine, Waldo, 39th street, & the entire midtown area.
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MidtownCat
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Re: Plaza move-ins (ongoing)

Post by MidtownCat » Thu May 24, 2018 10:09 am

taxi wrote:This is a stupid conversation. The Plaza owners could care less if you forgot your toothbrush. Use your finger.
It is a remarkably dumb conversation.

I mean, Burberry is moving out of the Plaza and we’re bringing in an Old Navy and a teen Christian rock clothing store and people are complaining about not a having a freaking drug store.

The Plaza is in a retail death spiral and people are worried about where tourists are going to get some mouthwash. It's insane.

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Re: Plaza move-ins (ongoing)

Post by brewcrew1000 » Thu May 24, 2018 11:02 am

MidtownCat wrote:
taxi wrote:This is a stupid conversation. The Plaza owners could care less if you forgot your toothbrush. Use your finger.
It is a remarkably dumb conversation.

I mean, Burberry is moving out of the Plaza and we’re bringing in an Old Navy and a teen Christian rock clothing store and people are complaining about not a having a freaking drug store.

The Plaza is in a retail death spiral and people are worried about where tourists are going to get some mouthwash. It's insane.
Retail in general is kind of in a death spiral and they need ways to reinvent themselves and a drug store is a good start, there are tons of hotels around the plaza and not all of the people staying at these hotels are going to shop retail but I guarantee you 85% of them would go into a drug store for a bottle of water, soda, gum, candy, etc. A lot of these outdoor malls are re-branding as Lifestyle Centers, the plaza might as well get on that trend and trend away from an upscale quasi mall.

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Re: Plaza move-ins (ongoing)

Post by earthling » Thu May 24, 2018 11:03 am

Is not surprising most in KC would not 'get it' but is surprising for a pro urban site. The Plaza is conducive to pedestrian scale living as much as downtown and moreso than many otherwise semi-urban areas of KC. The fact that the Plaza is struggling to function as a mall is exactly the reason it should target mixing things up with neighborhood amenities, starting with drug store/market. It used to have both of these, broader nightlife would help too. Those who lived on Plaza during Nichols ownership said it was like living in a village, now it's just a mall. Part of pedestrian scale living is being able to walk to get a gallon of milk after seeing a movie or visiting bookstore and walk home.

The Plaza has all the bones to make that happen again yet has a focus that is not the future - malls. Bizarre some on this site don't understand this, for a pro urban neighborhood site, especially to call it dumb.

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Re: Plaza move-ins (ongoing)

Post by chrizow » Thu May 24, 2018 11:33 am

ANECDOTAL EVIDENCE

I was at Warby Parker this morning buying some sunglasses, and another customer asked the clerk if there was a Walgreen's on the Plaza. The clerk directed the customer to the Broadway and Troost locations. The customer seemed miffed there was not a Walgreen's on the Plaza.

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Re: Plaza move-ins (ongoing)

Post by hartliss » Thu May 24, 2018 11:54 am

First indication that Capital Grille is moving to old Williams-Sonoma spot: http://kivaweb.kcmo.org/kivanet/2/permi ... 1&jur=KCMO

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Re: Plaza move-ins (ongoing)

Post by earthling » Thu May 24, 2018 12:19 pm

chrizow wrote:ANECDOTAL EVIDENCE

I was at Warby Parker this morning buying some sunglasses, and another customer asked the clerk if there was a Walgreen's on the Plaza. The clerk directed the customer to the Broadway and Troost locations. The customer seemed miffed there was not a Walgreen's on the Plaza.
Bingo.

Expanding true pedestrian scale urban living and expectations of basic amenities in primo pedestrian areas will continue to be a challenge for central KCMO when even people who live in the city don't really 'get it'. Midtown still has too many wanting mega suburban sized Quick Trips, retail with parking in front instead of rear, large markets with mega parking, drugstores with drivethrus. It's getting better in some ways (bike attitude), worse in others (mega Westport Quicktrip), but baffling some on this site calling pursuance of pedestrian scale living 'dumb'. Understandable for those who haven't lived it in other cities to question it (or if simply a Plahzah hater), but to call it dumb...

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Re: Plaza move-ins (ongoing)

Post by WoodDraw » Thu May 24, 2018 1:09 pm

The problem with the plaza is it's a pretty shitty urban neighborhood. The weird bowl design and lack of density mostly kill any hope of it being a proper, mixed use urban district.

Better to just appreciate it for what it is than try to change it.

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Re: Plaza move-ins (ongoing)

Post by earthling » Thu May 24, 2018 1:20 pm

It sucks as a mall for those who have lived around it 20+ years. But it used to have drugstore/market and like I said those who lived it when Nichols owned it said it was great, like living in a village instead of a (now) mall. Lack of density with all the mid/hirises? I think it absolutely needs to re-invent itself given the online chanllenges in retail, with perhaps changing _some_ of the upper floor retail buildings into residential. Adapt or die.

Of all the potential places to develop true pedestrian scale living outside downtown, the Plaza is the one furthest along. A lot of of people live within walking distance already (most mid/hirises outside downtown), the streetcar will change the dynamics and adding residential within wouldn't be a huge challenge.

And I don't mean a complete makeover over 50% change. Am talking changing it up to 25% at most. - and turn Nichols Rd into pedestrian only street.

Thinking long term means starting the vision now... think how much midtown/Plaza will change with free streetcar running through (as downtown has, especially River Market).

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Re: Plaza move-ins (ongoing)

Post by WoodDraw » Thu May 24, 2018 1:50 pm

Sorry, but when you can't build taller than two stories, and the neighborhood throws a fit every time you try to build even on the outside, it's hard to change things.

You could theoretically fix this, but it's just a very weird neighborhood. I'd probably focus on making it more pedestrian only through the middle and embrace what it is: a shopping and eating district.

In my head, I've always pictured the middle of the plaza without the streets, like a true Spanish plaza or boulevard. Outdoor tables, kiosks, music, etc.

As it is, it's just a very boring neighborhood. Sorry plaza people :P
Last edited by WoodDraw on Thu May 24, 2018 2:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Plaza move-ins (ongoing)

Post by earthling » Thu May 24, 2018 1:56 pm

Some of the existing upper floors could be changed to residential. Sorry but there is still more density around Plaza (mid/hirises) than nearly all the rest of KC. Is strange to ignore this. It's not like they have to target building much new residential (like downtown), it's already there and ignored.

The Plaza bowl is indeed weird/boring just as a mall and wouldn't be if it adapted to something like this...
viewtopic.php?f=18&t=20330

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Re: Plaza move-ins (ongoing)

Post by WoodDraw » Thu May 24, 2018 2:04 pm

earthling wrote:Some of the existing upper floors could be changed to residential. Sorry but there is still more density around Plaza (mid/hirises) than nearly all the rest of KC. Is strange to ignore this. It's not like they have to target building much new residential (like downtown), it's already there and ignored.
I edited my post a few times... Sorry :)

I agree. But the residential is not integrated with the plaza. There's very little mixed use. It's residents here, shopping/restaurants here, and offices here.

The district itself is mixed use, but the buildings are not. That's a hard urban area to fix. And that's okay. Plenty of cities around the world have places like this. I'd just embrace it, but I don't live there so. :/

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Re: Plaza move-ins (ongoing)

Post by earthling » Thu May 24, 2018 2:10 pm

I lived it when Nichols owned it (tail end), nothing strange at all for those within 2-3 blocks walk (essentially all the hi/midrise buildings). Was far better when they recognized the neighborhood around it. It can be even better than that, especially with streetcar likely coming and mall only direction not really working out, especially trying to adapt to online world.

Turning Nichols Rd into pedestrian only is a way to draw surrounding neighborhood in as a place to hang out if done right. And gives new experience for visitors tired of Plaza. The pedestrian stretch could change every few years to keep things fresh.

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Re: Plaza move-ins (ongoing)

Post by WoodDraw » Thu May 24, 2018 2:33 pm

I don't really get what it is residents are asking for? Is it just a drug store?

Like in the glory days of the past plaza, what was there that you want back?

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Re: Plaza move-ins (ongoing)

Post by smh » Thu May 24, 2018 2:55 pm

What if we built new residential on top of the existing retail along say, Nichols road and then pedestrianized it.

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Re: Plaza move-ins (ongoing)

Post by earthling » Thu May 24, 2018 3:01 pm

Walkable drugstore/market are the basics. But the premise of my posts are about adapting Plaza to broader 'pedestrian scale living' amenities mixed into the shopping, which is elaborated on in the other link. And The Plaza has the bones to create that.

When I talk to my bother in Brooklyn about finding places to live - he wouldn't consider a neighborhood for a nanosecond that doesn't have those two basics to walk to - most wanting urban life want this. Yes KC isn't NYC but it can create pedestrian scale living and the Plaza is mostly there. Is funny to see KC people almost seemingly discourage discussing it, even on a pro urban site.

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Re: Plaza move-ins (ongoing)

Post by earthling » Thu May 24, 2018 3:01 pm

smh wrote:What if we built new residential on top of the existing retail along say, Nichols road and then pedestrianized it.
Yes! Might have to be just a few floors if the low rise Plaza Bowl boosters maintain power.

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Re: Plaza move-ins (ongoing)

Post by WoodDraw » Thu May 24, 2018 3:09 pm

earthling wrote:Walkable drugstore/market are the basics. But the premise of my posts are about adapting Plaza to broader 'pedestrian scale living' amenities mixed into the shopping, which is elaborated on in the other link. And The Plaza has the bones to create that.

When I talk to my bother in Brooklyn about finding places to live - he wouldn't consider a neighborhood for a nanosecond that doesn't have those two basics to walk to - most wanting urban life want this. Yes KC isn't NYC but it can create pedestrian scale living and the Plaza is mostly there. Is funny to see KC people almost seemingly discourage discussing it, even on a pro urban site.
So I 100% agree with your brother, but that's why I live downtown.

I just think the plaza will be hard to transform much because of the resistance to any change to it. Not to mention it all being held by a single developer.

It's too bad none of the hotels and housing integrate well into the neighborhood. Those would be good places for community places, but that's just not the way things were designed. It's a very car centric development that kind of fell into urbanity.

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Re: Plaza move-ins (ongoing)

Post by earthling » Thu May 24, 2018 3:13 pm

Right, understand downtown has more desirable mix but the discussion is not which is better, but how to improve the Plaza, especially when it can become a better urban _neighborhood_ as well as shopping destination.

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Re: Plaza move-ins (ongoing)

Post by WoodDraw » Thu May 24, 2018 3:20 pm

earthling wrote:Right, understand downtown has more desirable mix but the discussion is not which is better, but how to improve the Plaza, especially when it can become a better urban _neighborhood_ as well as shopping destination.
Agreed, and I think maybe we're talking past each other a little bit. I would love to see the plaza become a more livable urban area, I just struggle to see how it will happen.

I think a good first step would be pedestrianizing it more.

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Re: Plaza move-ins (ongoing)

Post by earthling » Thu May 24, 2018 4:32 pm

WoodDraw wrote:
earthling wrote:Right, understand downtown has more desirable mix but the discussion is not which is better, but how to improve the Plaza, especially when it can become a better urban _neighborhood_ as well as shopping destination.
Agreed, and I think maybe we're talking past each other a little bit. I would love to see the plaza become a more livable urban area, I just struggle to see how it will happen.

I think a good first step would be pedestrianizing it more.
Two options already discussed:
- Develop a vision and repeatedly 'sell' it to the new owners (I send other link about every 3 months) and also engage surrounding neighborhood orgs.
- If new Plaza owners won't budge, convince City to repurpose Plaza Tennis Center into amenities Plaza owners won't touch, as well as maybe a KCPD Plaza/Midtown Foot Patrol division, Plaza Library move and tennis courts on roof or top floor.

Might be easier to 'sell' such ideas after passing streetcar is actually live but urban strategy minded people would see such opportunities sooner.

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