Planners gave the green light for Kansas City to leave a true path through the philanthropist’s block. Shirley Helzberg is eyeing for redevelopment, with historic preservation and new-build components.
The Kansas City Plan Commission last Tuesday recommended that the city give up a 167-foot-long asphalt alley between 17th and 18th streets, in the block bounded west to east by Central and Wyandotte streets.
If approved, the vacation will accommodate the first part of a multiphase development by Helzberg, who proposes renovating two vacant Film Row buildings for historic offices. Buildings to be saved include the former Columbia Pictures and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios buildings at 214 W. 18th St. and 220 W. 18th St.
The connecting structure will link the small Columbia Pictures building, which has struggled with leasing, across the alley to the MGM Studios building, which is currently in “terrible shape,” he said. Pete Lacyrepresentative for Helzberg with Lacy & Co., our project development manager.
The new connection will allow future offices to share facilities and be more economical, he told city planners.