KC Foodie Park zoning approved by commission

A drawing of proposed buildings on the former Indian Springs mall site was shown at the Unified Government Commission meeting Thursday night. The proposed development is the KC Foodie Park, including restaurant pad sites along State Avenue, on the north, and a large food service center and distribution facility on the south side of the property. I-635 is to the east (or right) of the development.

The Unified Government Commission tonight voted 9-0 to approve zoning for a KC Foodie Park at 46th and State Avenue at the former Indian Springs mall site.

The proposal is for a Scavuzzo’s food service center and distribution facility on the south side of the almost 50-acre Indian Springs site. Also on the site are three to five restaurants along the State Avenue north side of the property, some retail, possibly a convenience store, possibly a small grocery store and food service-based home delivery site to the south of the restaurants, according to Curtis Peterson, an attorney representing Scavuzzo’s.

In addition, a four-story office building, to be the headquarters office for Scavuzzo’s, would include a test kitchen with culinary training and other office space for other tenants, he said.

There also would be a large solar farm nearby that would provide about 8 megawatts of solar energy for the center, and the applicant would seek a LEED certification, he said.

The Indian Springs site has been vacant since 2012, and the former shopping center has been demolished. Buildings that are still there include a police station and a bus station.

Peterson said Scavuzzo’s currently serves mostly restaurant clients by providing the food and equipment they need for their facilities. Most of their clients are locally owned and regional businesses, he added.

The company’s current distribution facility is in Kansas City, Kansas, and this proposal would include space for a new distribution facility and headquarters.

No one appeared for or against this project during a public hearing, and the UG commissioners did not ask any questions about it.

No financial details were discussed tonight. Financial and other details of the project are being worked on with the UG administrator’s office, according to Peterson, and could come before a UG standing committee soon. He said they are working on public financial incentives for infrastructure for the site. A development agreement will be presented as the project moves forward.

Once the details are completed, construction of the restaurant space and the food service center-distribution facility would be expected to take 15-18 months, according to Peterson.

Peterson said a brokerage team is currently seeking restaurants that want to locate along the State Avenue frontage, and there are six strong leads and two others that are talking with the brokers.

In his presentation to the commission, Peterson said that food preparation is an idea for one of the buildings that is directly south of the restaurant sites. However, he also said that this was a concept, and that it is hoped the restaurants that are their clients will want to do meal preparation and food-related services. “We have no idea for sure, the market will tell us,” Peterson said.

The food service and distribution center, on the south side of the property, includes cold storage, dry storage and offices that serve food service, he said. The development is listed as more than 230,000 square feet.

The restaurants on the north side and the food service center on the south side would be the first buildings that were built in this project, according to Peterson.

Some time was spent discussing screening for rooftop units in the design of the food service center-distribution facility, and how they would be screened from view. It was the last issue that planning and zoning staff had with the project. A number of design changes were proposed earlier, such as landscaping, the appearance of the building and sidewalks.

Developers had said at an earlier neighborhood meeting that the project could create 100 new jobs.

The proposal is overall a commercial, retail and light industrial proposal. Zoning would change from the current planned business park, planned limited business district and planned commercial districts to planned nonretail business, planned general business and planned light industrial and industrial park districts. The master plan amendment is being changed from mixed-use to business park and community commercial.

The planning department’s documents stated that the proposed uses of the properties are compatible with the zoning. “The increase in heavy truck traffic on 47th Street could be a concern to the residences,” the document stated. The residences should not be detrimentally affected as long as there are few after-hours trucks, the document stated.

At the neighborhood meeting, developers explained that they would be proposing that restaurants moving into the pad sites would own and operate the restaurants.

A drawing of the proposed development, with State Avenue on the bottom right, was shown at the Unified Government Commission meeting. A four-story office building is on the left.
A drawing of the food service center-distribution facility, to be on the southwest side of the property, was shown at the Unified Government Commission meeting.

Thursday’s UG meeting is online at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FHNm9n1m5ec.

To see some past stories on the KC Foodie Park, visit:

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