18th and Vine

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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18th and Vine

Postby macnw » Sun Jun 01, 2003 10:17 am

I saw an article in the Star which said that the leader of the Black Economic Union is implicated in embezzling money from the orginization. This is sad. We already have an economically depressed area, and then to find out that the person leading the revitalization effort is stealing money. It's no wonder few companies want to relocate at 18th and Vine. This is just more evidence to support people's misconceptions. I hope they can find someone respectful enought to not steal money from such a good cause. :twisted:

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18th and Vine

Postby dangerboy » Sun Jun 01, 2003 4:32 pm

To the contrary, there are many companies looking to locate in the area. Originally the people running it held for famous national soul food and jazz establishments while there were several local entrepeneurs trying to get in. Several businesses are set to open this summer and fall. The residential component is doing really well. The developers of the Vine St. Lofts went back and added more units to their plans because the demand for housing was so great.

For the first seveal years there was a big leadership problem and overlapping jurisdictions, but things are really looking up lately. 18th and Vine is succeeding despite the shaddiness of the people running it.

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18th and Vine

Postby KCgridlock » Mon Jun 02, 2003 12:48 am

Once Beacon Hill takes off, 18th and Vine will be fine.

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18th & Vine Discontent

Postby Good2Great » Wed Aug 20, 2003 10:43 pm

I saw a news story on Fox @ 9, noting the owners of the Peachtree Restaurant are mad as heck and feel deceived that the city isn't doing much to attract people to the area. They were talking about legal ramifications and cutting their lease as they're apparently HOPING to break even.

I have to admit that I've been wanting to go to the Peachtree, but haven't. I'm going in the next week!
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Postby KCPowercat » Wed Aug 20, 2003 10:46 pm

Have they ever heard of MARKET RESEARCH? They knew what they were getting into....

The city should promote the piss out of the area and maybe with a few more businesses to compliment the main attractions it will (Strange Frut, red vine, another dance club)....

I like the bbq and blues festival idea the EDC wants to put on next year.


BTW, when is the last time Bryant's complained about marketing/location? Good restaurants have a way of surviving.
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Postby paisstat » Thu Aug 21, 2003 2:16 am

The area is really failing to materialize, sadly. A new ball-park in the area would be a huge boost, but my old argument still stands--Kaufmann is too new and in too good of shape to abandon. The new row of buildings is great, and the new lofts will be great too. I would like to see more new construction in the area. Right now, there is nothing but vacant lots with trash and weeds.

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Postby dangerboy » Thu Aug 21, 2003 6:33 am

Tell them to be patient. Pioneering an upscale restaurant in a formerly blighted location isn't easy and takes time and resources. Just ask Cafe Allegro - it faced a similar situation on what is now the super-popular West 39th St., which received absolutely zero city support. Anyone opening a restaurant should have enough cash on hand to last at least six months, if not a year. It takes that long build a clientale and become profitable.

The ironic thing is that the prospects for 18th & Vine have never been better. After a long struggle there is finally some momentum building. The lofts and apartments are in high demand. The Vine Street Lofts building to the south had so much demand that they double the size of their property.

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18th & Vine Discontent

Postby Good2Great » Thu Aug 21, 2003 8:38 am

1. Bryants has been a KC fixture for many years and was in a major traffic area when municipal stadium WAS across the street. That led to its popularity.

2. The City really pimped the area as the next place to be and has consistently given the impression that it cares about the area and will work to recruit patrons to the area. It hasn't happened.
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Postby KCPowercat » Thu Aug 21, 2003 8:48 am

obviously bryants was an extreme example. I agree the city needs to put some more effort into pimping ALL KC attractions.
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18th & Vine Discontent

Postby kc_devotee » Fri Aug 22, 2003 2:04 pm

well the Peachtree kind of sucks, I think. She doesn't serve alcohol, and the concept--healthy soul food--is an oxymoron.

In my mind the problem with the district is that its TOO clean...18th and Vine was about sin, and booze, and sex, and music, and dancing...none of which goes on there. You can't even smoke in the Blue Room for gods sake.

I would love to see a hip hop club. And a really noisy fun bar. And gambling.

But a smoothie store, and healthy soul food, and no hooch? Blech!

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18th & Vine Discontent

Postby QueSi2Opie » Fri Aug 22, 2003 8:08 pm

kc_devotee wrote:well the Peachtree kind of sucks, I think. She doesn't serve alcohol, and the concept--healthy soul food--is an oxymoron.

In my mind the problem with the district is that its TOO clean...18th and Vine was about sin, and booze, and sex, and music, and dancing...none of which goes on there. You can't even smoke in the Blue Room for gods sake.

I would love to see a hip hop club. And a really noisy fun bar. And gambling.

But a smoothie store, and healthy soul food, and no hooch? Blech!


Turn 18th & Vine into KC's version for Beale Street. Only problem is too many African-American Lutherans and Baptists have pull on the east side.
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18th and Vine

Postby macnw » Mon Aug 25, 2003 3:28 pm

I hope KC does not become engrossed with saving downtown and forget about other strategic areas in the city. For as long as 18th and Vine has been in the works, there should be some kind of promotions going on there. What is it going to take to attract people? Good places to eat are a start, but what to do after meals. Both indoor and outdoor venues would be nice, especially on those hot summer evenings.

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18th & Vine Discontent

Postby bahua » Fri Aug 29, 2003 5:42 am

One thing that keeps people away from the area is that it's something of an island of vitality in a sea of blight. If the city could work on connecting the area to other prosperous parts of the city, I think it would be a lot more successful. As it is, it just looks fake, labored, and laboriously touristic.

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Postby KCLofts » Thu Sep 11, 2003 12:39 pm

I have been to the 18th & Vine area once or twice to look around, but I typically have no reason to venture east of the Paseo. I decided to spend some time in the area today and was quite surprised with what I saw going on. The biggest surprise was the Vine Street District, which is building a lot of new housing to the south and east of 18th & Vine. The Vine Street Lofts at 22nd & Vine look really nice. The view of downtown and Crown Center from the hill behind these lofts is absolutely spectacular. I assume that Vine Street Lofts part 2 will be built on this empty lot soon.

A few blocks to the east is Vine Street Place, a new housing development built on the site of the old Municipal Stadium. This looks like it will be a great urban neighborhood. Houses in close proximity, porches, and garages out back accessible by an alley. Prices are in the upper $100's.

I did a quick search of some of the property records in the area. It seems that specualtors/developers are snapping up a lot of the property in this area, especially on Vine St. I think the ball is starting to roll and momentum is gaining.

On a somewhat related note, there is a huge stone castle-like building at about 21st and Vine. Its all boarded up now, but looks like it used to be something quite impressive. Does anyone know what this was?

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Postby dangerboy » Thu Sep 11, 2003 1:00 pm

There are also brand new loft apartments on 18th St. in the heart of the jazz district that leasing quickly. Plus the Basie Court apartments and Jazz Hill Townhomes.

KCLofts, are you referring to this building:
http://www.kclibrary.org/resources/sc/m ... ediaID=460

It's an old jail. The Black Archives of Mid-America wants to move into that building, but so far there is no money to refurbish it.

http://www.kclibrary.org/resources/sc/m ... aID=102921

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18th & Vine Discontent

Postby KC_JAYHAWK » Thu Sep 11, 2003 1:27 pm

The new housing is great but the area (particularly Vine Street) lacks the energy you would expect in a so-called "Jazz District" The new buildings are nice, but it's too nice for a Jazz District. They need to go in and rehab the older buildings, turn them into restaurants, clubs, barber shops, sandwich shops, etc. And the one club they should have that is still missing is the Hey Hey Club. The original building is still there, I think the old neon signage is now gone, but that was the club depicted in Altman's "Kansas City". It seems ideal to bring that club back.
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Postby KCLofts » Thu Sep 11, 2003 1:36 pm

Danger - that's the building. I noticed that the Black Archives is currently located next door in another neat old limestone building that used to be a firehouse. It would be great to see the old prison restored, its a very unique building.

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18th and Vine

Postby trailerkid » Sun Dec 14, 2003 12:55 am

18th and Vine has a real middle of nowhere feel to it. Approaching it from the west on 18th Street, there are a number of spawling metal warehouses and industry similar to other industrial areas of KC and KCK. 18th and Vine is a little city in the middle of nowhere.

The Metro has that ugly suburban complex next door as does the Star have an ugly tin warehouse. And what is the story with "Parade Homes"? Were they supposed to be urban renewal because they don't fit and haven't renewed much. Connecting 18th and Vine to pedestrians downtown would be very, very difficult.

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Postby FangKC » Mon Dec 15, 2003 1:22 am

Yes, 18th and Vine is an island of sorts--unconnected to downtown in many ways. I agree that the western approach on 18th St. leaves a lot to be desired. The industrial feel is sort of responsible for the disconnectness from downtown. I'm sure those industrial warehouses were seen as an improvement when they were constructed, because what was there before was probably much worse.

I think longterm that 18th Street between Paseo and Troost should be completely rezoned and changed. The Metro should be moved and all those warehouses taken out. It would be much better to replace those buildings with apartment houses and storefronts so that there is a natural link to the Crossroads District. The streets should be lined with cool old streetlamps that tie the neighborhood together better. I think there should also be a sign welcoming people to the Jazz District.

Hopefully, the Beacon Hill redevelopment to the south will begin to create a sense of neighborhood and community that is lacking now. If they could also begin redevelopment efforts on the east side of the Jazz District, that would help a lot too.

The residential feel that The Paseo used to have from Admiral Boulevard south past 18th St. has been lost as well. It would be great to infill with new apartment houses there. There are a lot of unsightly buildings, and abandoned gas stations, that are utilitarian and industrial in nature along The Paseo.

I think the ultimate success of the Jazz District will depend on creating residential density in the neighborhoods surrounding it--and providing a base population of people that will frequent the businesses, clubs, and retaurants there. Housing is the solution. Lots of it. While it's a historically black neighborhood, efforts should be made to create more integration among all races (Black, Caucasian, Asian, Hispanic), and income levels. Creating lots of low-income housing in that area is not going to ultimately solve the problems of the Jazz District.

I think another longterm goal should be to demolish all the project housing north of 18th St., and replace those buildings with more mixed housing. I think it's always much better to mix income levels and distribute people with low-incomes throughout the city. Bunching them up in those projects hasn't really solved anything. It's better social policy to renovate old houses and give them housing assistance, or set aside a few units in newer apartment communites for low-income people, and provide them with lower rents equal to what they paid in the projects.

I've never thought it was a good idea to create big housing projects for low-income people. It ultimately produces a slum or ghetto.

To overcome the perception that it's a bad neighborhood, city leaders and the police department must make a special effort to make that area literally the safest in the city. If they have to build a precinct office near 18th and Vine, so be it. Having lots of squad cars parked outside it would send a message. The city should consider creating incentives to get police officers to live in the neighborhood, and have them park their squad cars on the streets when not in use.

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18th and Vine

Postby staubio » Tue Dec 16, 2003 12:56 pm

I'm trying to recruit a friend from Leawood to live in the city, so I agreed to take her around to look at some options in the city.

Among them, we visited the Vine Street Lofts. These babies are cool. I can only imagine what a great place it will be to live once the district really takes off -- it'll be a great livable, walkable area.

The rents are very reasonable. I think one that I looked at, on the corner of the building facing north and west, was going for $700 some for 800+ square feet. The units on the back side have patios, the north side has the obvious luxery of the view.

The useful information, or what you all might care about, is that the unit is already more than half full at just over a year into its life. It is a very cool building. I don't want it to deter me from living in the loop, but I'm going to have to consider this with my upcoming move further into the core.


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