Adam Anthony Pfeifer, NCARB

Lenexa, Kansas 66215

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+power & light apartments

Location: Kansas City, Missouri
Client: Northpoint Development
Contractor: Neighbors Construction
Historical Consultant: Rosin Preservation
Cost: Withheld

An icon of downtown Kansas City, the 1931 Kansas City Power & Light Building stood as a beacon to westward expansion and industrialization as the tallest skyscraper west of the Mississippi for over 30 years. Originally designed by the infamous Kansas City firm of Hoit, Price, & Barnes, the building was originally constructed during the Great Depression for the Kansas City Power & Light Company as their new headquarters. The original plans included a fabulously art deco detailed retail space on the main floor that would act as "an electric appliance showroom" with offices above. The building exudes class with its art deco motif both inside and out.

In 2014, after many years of near zero office occupancy, the building and adjacent parking lot was acquired by local developer Northpoint Development. Immediately we began to scour the building, research deeper history of the building, work with local historians and city officials, and develop a plan for the adapative reuse of the tower to bring it back to life. An overarching master plan included 210 market-rate apartments in the existing tower and a new 500-stall parking garage on the neighboring parcel that would be wrapped with an additional 81 market-rate apartments and street level retail and leasing. The new garage would be connected to the tower with a 4th floor skybridge over the alley separating the two buildings. The existing tower would include an event space at its street level (The Grand Hall), a clubroom space in its lower level to include fitness, screening room, sauna, jacuzzi, therapy and massage suites, and wine storage, and a tenant lounge at the 31st floor featuring a terrace with 360 degree views of the City, while the top of the new parking garage would be turned into an urban oasis complete with pool and cabanas.

Beyond the primary building entrance and existing two-story retail space, much of the building's interior historical character had been either covered or removed, however the primary frame of the building was in very solid shape. New construction within the building was carefully married with the existing frames making every effort to maximize ceiling height at the exterior wall while coordinating with the existing concrete structure.

Apartment units feature upgraded finishes with engineered hardwood flooring, large windows, stained cabinetry, quartz countertops and more. Select units in the existing tower include large private terraces, while all units in the new building include balconies. Select units in the new building also include upwards of 60' of street frontage maximizing access to natural daylight. Additionally, the "wedding cake" stepped apperance of the building - a product of a 1923 zoning ordinacne - is adorned in new full color changing lighting harking back to years past when it would change color of its spire dependent of the weather weather forecast.

Kansas City Business Journal | Capstone Real Estate Awards - Adaptive Reuse

Historic Kansas City Preservation Awards | Excellence Award for Best Adaptive Reuse

International Concrete Repair, Great Plains Chapter | Historic Category

This work was completed while at NSPJ Architects. All photos used with permission.