Help Preserve Old Westport

$3,350 of $15k goal

Raised by 46 people in 1 month
MJ
Marty Wiedenmann Jarvis
on behalf of James Wanser
 KANSAS CITY, MO
Most people who live or visit Kansas City know Westport as a unique historic area – but Westport is in danger of rapid change. Several developers have proposed large projects that threaten to overwhelm historic Westport with their scale. Please join us in the urgent push to raise $15,000 by April 1 for a historic survey to preserve Westport. 

Dear Friends of Old Westport,

There is growing concern about the pace and scale of redevelopment projects that the group says could change the face of historic Westport.

Westport is perhaps the most important historic district of Kansas City, yet most of its historic buildings have no protection from demolition. If we don’t act quickly, the Westport that we know today and that many people have loved for decades could be gone very quickly

We hope you will join us in an effort to slow down current and future development proposals until we complete a historic survey of Westport.

Several large projects are on the table.

On March 6, the Kansas City Business Journal reported the Minnesota-based Opus Group has submitted plans for a "mixed-used project including 256 apartments, 8,500 square feet of commercial space and a 275-space parking garage.” The proposed development would replace the Bank of America Building at the southwest corner of Westport Road and Broadway.
A rendering with the proposed redevelopment of Westport Road and Broadway, includes a six-story apartment and commercial building. Note the change in scale between the new building and the traditional two-story Westport building on the bottom left hand side of this picture and in the image below.

This 1915 view looking south on Broadway toward the intersection of Westport Road and Broadway.  Courtesy Kansas City Public LIbrary Missouri Valley Special Collections. 

The building  (visible in the image above) dates back to 1876.  The Westport Avenue Bank, then the oldest suburban bank in Kansas City, purchased the property and remodeled it in 1920.  
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Meanwhile, the building at the southwest corner of Westport and Broadway was recently replaced with a new restaurant and bar operated by the national HopCat chain. Another developer is currently revising plans which originally called for a pair of 14-story mixed use towner above Manor Square. A Wichita developer last year presented plans for replacing the former XO nightclub at 40th and Central with a four-story Town Place Suites by Marriott extended stay hotel.

Survey:  A Tool for Evaluating and Responding to Development Proposals

We are asking for assistance from the community to immediately conduct a professional survey of Westport’s current properties. This survey will assess the historic and cultural importance of Old Westport and help us to make important decisions about what should be preserved in the future. The survey will provide a starting point for a community discussion about how to move forward in preserving Old Westport.

But we need to move quickly, before more projects hit the drawing board. We ask you to contribute what you can to help use raise the $25,000 we need to move forward with the survey. 

About Help Save Old Westport
The goal of Help Save Old Westport is to preserve, protect and promote the architectural character and historical significance of Old Westport’s buildings and landscape.  Some members of The Help Save Old Westport working group include Mary Jo Draper, Alana Smith, Bob Babcock, Thomas Platt, Louise Myers and more.  Several members of Historic Kansas City are also meeting with the group, as well as managing the GoFundMe contributions.

Thank you. If you prefer to make a private contribution, please contact:

Jim Wanser, Treasurer
Historic Kansas City Organization
234 W 10th Street, Kansas City, Missouri 64105
phone: 816-931-8448
fax: 816-931-8558
email: hkcf@historickansascity.org.
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Update 2
Posted by Marty Wiedenmann Jarvis
18 days ago
   Share
Poor Westport, our worst fears are beginning to happen. How said to be such a miss-fit design and of all names ... "Crossroads Apartments." Seems like that name belongs in another neighborhood. Maybe "Frontier Trails Apartments" would be more appropriate, especially directly across the street from the 3 founding pioneers statue and sidewalk map. All we ask is to use some historic design features to be more neighborhood friendly, especially on the main intersection. Read the article: http://www.bizjournals.com/kansascity/news/2017/03/06/opus-development-westport-256-apartments-retail.html
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Update 1
Posted by Marty Wiedenmann Jarvis
24 days ago
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Thank you to everyone who has donated or who has shared the link with others. We appreciate all your help, including to Share on Facebook!

Greg Allen, Past President of Historic Kansas City and a member of our working group, was interviewed this week about the project ... have a look: http://www.kctv5.com/clip/13135633/community-raising-funds-for-old-westport
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Read a Previous Update
Marty Wiedenmann Jarvis
22 days ago

Unfortunately it is not the city's job to do the surveys. Groups like ours who want to have one done, as a first step toward any type of application for a historic designation or other forms of historical preservation, must solicit funding from private sources including our own pockets. We appreciate all support for this project from sharing the information to help spread the word, or if possible, making contributions to the fund. Thank you

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Kimberly A. Burgess
23 days ago

Isn't it the city's job to do historic surveys?

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$3,350 of $15k goal

Raised by 46 people in 1 month
Created February 9, 2017
MJ
Marty Wiedenmann Jarvis  
on behalf of James Wanser
MA
$25
Marla Anderson
4 days ago
KS
$25
Karen Clawson Sifton
4 days ago
$25
Laurie Chipman
5 days ago
$25
Anne Rogers Owen
5 days ago
BR
$10
Bruce Rodgers
5 days ago
MM
$500
Marshall Miller
5 days ago
$20
Anonymous
5 days ago
PH
$25
Patrick Haverty
5 days ago
$50
Anonymous
5 days ago
PM
$50
Patti Meier
5 days ago

Save Westport!

Marty Wiedenmann Jarvis
22 days ago

Unfortunately it is not the city's job to do the surveys. Groups like ours who want to have one done, as a first step toward any type of application for a historic designation or other forms of historical preservation, must solicit funding from private sources including our own pockets. We appreciate all support for this project from sharing the information to help spread the word, or if possible, making contributions to the fund. Thank you

+ Read More
Kimberly A. Burgess
23 days ago

Isn't it the city's job to do historic surveys?

+ Read More
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