Concerns arise about affordability of new apartments in KC - KCTV5 News

Concerns arise about affordability of new apartments in KC

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KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -

The downtown KC skyline is evolving soon, as Three Light Luxury Apartments will soon be part of the view.

The building is expected to have 300 units, but they are homes that a number of people won’t be able to afford.

The council is debating the contract renegotiations with developers of the potential Three Light Apartments complex.

Affordable housing and workforce housing is a big concern.

Members of the Coalition for Kansas City Economic Development Reform held signs as part of a peaceful protest during today’s council meeting.

They don’t think the ordinance, which passed 8-3, benefits low-income areas.

In 2004, the city signed a contract with the Cordish Company for a 99-year lease that allowed construction on an unlimited number of buildings downtown.

During recent renegotiations, the contractor agreed to shorten the contract to end in 2045 and max out the number of buildings to six.

The Three Light building is a $200-million-dollar project and will be built at Truman and Main. It is expected to be finished in 2021.

The council is contractually obligated to build a garage for it with a cost of $17.5 million.

They’ve negotiated a funding stream to zero that out, and still allows the city to keep its word.

“This doesn’t sound like something that’s as equitable as it could be,” Janet Parks said. “Is this really the best use of the city’s money at this time? Is this something that is helping out lower-income people?”

“Shortening the term is better,” said Troy Schulte, City Manager. “It allows us to reflect the current conditions of downtown Kansas City. It’s much more revitalizing.”

A project at the Midland Building is expected to be built at the same time as Three Light. There will be 100 units for workforce housing there.

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