Lee's Summit named "Best Downtown"

Jackson/Cass Suburbs, including South KC
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Pancho_and_Lefty
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Lee's Summit named "Best Downtown"

Post by Pancho_and_Lefty » Sat May 08, 2010 9:37 pm

This report on the Fox 4 television station website indicates that the historic LS downtown is one of the very best in the nation.  I am glad to see that one downtown in the metropolitan area is working hard at attracting customers without giving away the store to developers like Cordish and co.  The downtown hasn't dried up despite its proximity to several lifestyle centers, which is no small feat.  The Lee's Summit downtown is also not solely dependent on tourists, out-of-town guest, or extremely niche shoppers. 

http://www.fox4kc.com/news/wdaf-story-l ... 1412.story

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Re: Lee's Summit named "Best Downtown"

Post by mean » Sun May 09, 2010 12:02 am

LS has done a good job leveraging their building stock assets while KCMO tears theirs down and makes parking lots. It is undoubtedly a great place for young families who want walkable neighborhood amenities and good schools in the same package. The question I have is, what happens to the degrading postwar housing on the fringes?
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Re: Lee's Summit named "Best Downtown"

Post by dangerboy » Sun May 09, 2010 7:57 am

mean wrote: The question I have is, what happens to the degrading postwar housing on the fringes?
I predict they will start redeveloping some of this housing.  Either into some denser multi-family or some tear-downs like you see in West Plaza and NE Joco.

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Re: Lee's Summit named "Best Downtown"

Post by Roanoker » Mon May 10, 2010 9:37 am

Pancho_and_Lefty wrote: This report on the Fox 4 television station website indicates that the historic LS downtown is one of the very best in the nation.  I am glad to see that one downtown in the metropolitan area is working hard at attracting customers without giving away the store to developers like Cordish and co.  The downtown hasn't dried up despite its proximity to several lifestyle centers, which is no small feat.  The Lee's Summit downtown is also not solely dependent on tourists, out-of-town guest, or extremely niche shoppers. 

http://www.fox4kc.com/news/wdaf-story-l ... 1412.story
I forwarded the link to my daughter-in-law, who grew up in Lee's Summit and continues to live there with my son and grandson. I put in the subject line, "Your homeland is famous". She said the following: "Too bad they left out the fact that business can't seem to make it downtown and everything closes at 5!"
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Re: Lee's Summit named "Best Downtown"

Post by shinatoo » Mon May 10, 2010 9:51 am

Roanoker wrote: I forwarded the link to my daughter-in-law, who grew up in Lee's Summit and continues to live there with my son and grandson. I put in the subject line, "Your homeland is famous". She said the following: "Too bad they left out the fact that business can't seem to make it downtown and everything closes at 5!"
So she doesn't get down their often. I can think of two businesses that have closed in the last five years. One was an interior decorations store and the other was a BBQ joint that was just awful, bad food and worse services. Most of the retail closes by six but all of the dining is open into the evening.

Her comments are completely off-base.

Oh, and the do your own pottery place moved again, but they move every time their lease is up.
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Re: Lee's Summit named "Best Downtown"

Post by mean » Mon May 10, 2010 10:10 am

Yeah, I don't get that "businesses can't make it downtown" line, either. From what I can tell, there's a ton of stuff down there and the vast majority of it has been successful.

I don't have many reasons to visit, but last time I was down there for a show at Jerry's, from about 8-midnight on a Monday, the micro-winery was hopping, and the Peanut seemed to be doing a brisk business. The little diner appeared to be closed, but all the other restaurants were open and had tables when I got down there. It was a pretty cool little scene, I thought.
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Re: Lee's Summit named "Best Downtown"

Post by Roanoker » Mon May 10, 2010 12:34 pm

shinatoo wrote: So she doesn't get down their often. I can think of two businesses that have closed in the last five years. One was an interior decorations store and the other was a BBQ joint that was just awful, bad food and worse services. Most of the retail closes by six but all of the dining is open into the evening.

Her comments are completely off-base.

Oh, and the do your own pottery place moved again, but they move every time their lease is up.
Her subsequent comment:

"I can think of at least 6 places that have closed since they started remodeling downtown and every time we try to run to a store down there they are closed. From what I have heard the rent is really high and they don't get a ton of traffic. Oh well nothing to lose sleep over."

I'm thinking the differences in viewpoints have to do with why people might want to go downtown. Perhaps forum folks are more interested in food and drink after hours than in daytime shopping.
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Re: Lee's Summit named "Best Downtown"

Post by ignatius » Mon May 10, 2010 12:38 pm

I like downtown LS but am surprised it would be rated high.  It's functional but I've seen outer metro downtowns far more functional with more streetlife, especially outside Chicago, DC, LA, SF, etc.  

Though I haven't been in a while.  Is it bustling with pedestrians?

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Re: Lee's Summit named "Best Downtown"

Post by mean » Mon May 10, 2010 12:49 pm

Roanoker wrote:I'm thinking the differences in viewpoints have to do with why people might want to go downtown. Perhaps forum folks are more interested in food and drink after hours than in daytime shopping.
Probably partly that, and partly that many people who live in the 'burbs are used to doing virtually all their shopping at places like Wal-Mart, Target, and mega-mart style grocery stores, all of which are either open 24 hours a day or until at least 9 or 10pm.
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Re: Lee's Summit named "Best Downtown"

Post by shinatoo » Mon May 10, 2010 1:05 pm

Roanoker wrote: Her subsequent comment:

"I can think of at least 6 places that have closed since they started remodeling downtown and every time we try to run to a store down there they are closed. From what I have heard the rent is really high and they don't get a ton of traffic. Oh well nothing to lose sleep over."

I'm thinking the differences in viewpoints have to do with why people might want to go downtown. Perhaps forum folks are more interested in food and drink after hours than in daytime shopping.
fair enough, but six out of 79 (from the list on downtownls.org) over a five year period, in the middle of the second biggest recession of the last 100 years, is not the negative picture that your daughter is trying to paint. She needs to go down there on a Saturday afternoon in the summer a see how busy that place is. She might be surprised.
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Re: Lee's Summit named "Best Downtown"

Post by dangerboy » Mon May 10, 2010 1:24 pm

ignatius wrote: I like downtown LS but am surprised it would be rated high.  It's functional but I've seen outer metro downtowns far more functional with more streetlife, especially outside Chicago, DC, LA, SF, etc.  
One the downtown LS does really well is marketing, and good marketing tends to boost your position in these rankings regardless of the actual quality of the product being marketed. 

Regardless, Downtown Lee's Summit might be the best place in our suburbs for some good transit-oriented development.  The city is very keen on commuter rail, has a high percentage of residents commuting to Downtown, and is already interested in a denser and more vital downtown.

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Re: Lee's Summit named

Post by FangKC » Wed Apr 24, 2019 5:59 pm

Lee's Summit greenlights $52M downtown multifamily project
A $52 million multifamily project will be coming to downtown Lee’s Summit after the City Council gave initial approval earlier this month.

The project, by Indianapolis-based developer Cityscape Residential, would include 276 apartments at the corner of Second and Douglas streets.

The project would incorporate the 100-year-old sanctuary of the former United Methodist Church on the block into its design.

The developer, Jim Thomas, is a Raytown native whose local projects include Crossroads Westside, Apex and Summit on Quality Hill, as well as several projects within the Prairiefire development in Overland Park. It's unclear when the project might come online, and Cityscape did not respond to a request for comment.
...
https://tinyurl.com/y4t4herz

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Re: Lee's Summit named

Post by grovester » Wed Sep 11, 2019 11:16 am

I hadn't been to downtown Lee's Summit in probably 15 years, so I was happily impressed when I finally got around to it this week.

Had lunch at 3rd Street Social which has a very good menu and atmosphere. Bigger than I anticipated, they have put a lot of thought into the layout.
In addition to tables, there are large circular booths down the center, with high backs. Nice for conversations and help break the noise level overall. We had Croque Madame and Heirloom Tomato pie and both were very good. There were another half dozen items that seemed like must tries.

Was too early for The W, which I had heard about previously and will require a second visit. There were also a number of tap houses/beer joints that will require further investigation.

I prefer the downtown physical layout over say, old OP or Brookside, much more compact and without adjacent car sewers.

Earlier in the week we tried the recently opened portion of the Rock Island Trail. The Bannister/Norfleet trailhead has a bit of a dead hooker vibe, but it get more residential as you head south.

LS should really figure out a way to connect this trail to their downtown, that and add a boutique hotel. Once the full route is open they could really have a destination.

With the LS being where it is, it's hard not to drive, so a couple of recommendations:(I don't get on 435 any more, that thing is a death trap.)

From the city, take Blue Parkway to 350 highway, pretty scenic and low stress.
From JoCo, take Bannister all the way out. Surprisingly pleasant drive.

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Re: Lee's Summit named

Post by kucer » Wed Sep 11, 2019 11:57 am

grovester wrote:
Wed Sep 11, 2019 11:16 am
I hadn't been to downtown Lee's Summit in probably 15 years, so I was happily impressed when I finally got around to it this week.

Had lunch at 3rd Street Social which has a very good menu and atmosphere. Bigger than I anticipated, they have put a lot of thought into the layout.
In addition to tables, there are large circular booths down the center, with high backs. Nice for conversations and help break the noise level overall. We had Croque Madame and Heirloom Tomato pie and both were very good. There were another half dozen items that seemed like must tries.

Was too early for The W, which I had heard about previously and will require a second visit. There were also a number of tap houses/beer joints that will require further investigation.

I prefer the downtown physical layout over say, old OP or Brookside, much more compact and without adjacent car sewers.

Earlier in the week we tried the recently opened portion of the Rock Island Trail. The Bannister/Norfleet trailhead has a bit of a dead hooker vibe, but it get more residential as you head south.

LS should really figure out a way to connect this trail to their downtown, that and add a boutique hotel. Once the full route is open they could really have a destination.

With the LS being where it is, it's hard not to drive, so a couple of recommendations:(I don't get on 435 any more, that thing is a death trap.)

From the city, take Blue Parkway to 350 highway, pretty scenic and low stress.
From JoCo, take Bannister all the way out. Surprisingly pleasant drive.
Our daughter started playing club volleyball and the club is based out of Lee's Summit so we started hanging in LS while she practiced. Totally agree about downtown...it reminds me of a mini-Mass St. in Lawrence. Outside of downtown, I highly recommend Pho La La in a tiny strip mall on Sycamore. Excellent Pho.

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