Crossroads will get first apartment high-rise

Rob Roberts
Kansas City Business Journal
April 13, 2015

Copaken Brooks and EPC Real Estate Group LLC are preparing to break ground on the first-ever high-rise apartment project in Kansas City's Crossroads Arts District.

ARTerra, a 12-story, 125-unit building, will rise from the heart of the arts district at 21st and Wyandotte streets. Aaron Schlagel, vice president of development for Copaken Brooks, said construction will begin in late summer or early fall on the $24 million project, which will include 150 enclosed parking spaces and 2,000 square feet of retail space on part of the first floor. Walk-out apartment units also will be available on the first floor.

Schlagel said a 10-year property tax abatement from Kansas City's Land Clearance for Redevelopment Authority and recent City Council approval helped pave the way for the new Crossroads landmark.

ARTerra will pay homage to the Crossroads Arts District with a custom art installation that will be commissioned by artists for a planned fifth-floor open-air amenity area. Residents, neighbors and art connoisseurs will be able to view the installation, which will be visible from street level.

The project is part of Copaken Brooks' continued investment in the Crossroads, which is known for its 95 art galleries and 30 restaurants.

"We are actively pursuing market-changing developments that are designed around the streetcar and changing market trends towards investment Downtown," Jon Copaken, a principal at Copaken Brooks, said in a release. "We believe the urban fabric of Downtown is evolving, building on momentum from the last several years, to create one of the most interesting and captivating downtowns in the country. For those who want high-rise living in the arts district of Kansas City, this project will be the choice."

Schlagel said preleasing for ARTerra will begin in 2016

"Due to the urban infill and transit-oriented development nature of ARTerra, there is no other project like it in the metro area," Schlagel said.

Copaken Brooks' development partner on the ARTerra project, EPC, is known for its pioneering developments, property management and marketing of high-end multifamily and mixed-use real estate.

"It's an exciting time for the downtown community, and we are pleased about the positive impact this investment is going to have on the urban core of Kansas City, and its ability to attract and retain professionals and businesses," Mike McKeen, a principal with EPC, said in a release. "We are also enjoying the opportunity to work alongside Copaken Brooks, a team who has really proven themselves in the real estate world. We feel this product type is the way of the future for urban communities and that this design is a perfect size and fit for the multifamily needs of Kansas City, specifically the Crossroads."

Copaken Brooks' past downtown developments include office projects such as Town Pavilion, 1201 Walnut, and the Service Management Group headquarters building redevelopment. The company also is spearheading Corrigan Station, a 145,000-quare-foot office and retail redevelopment project at 19th and Main streets, which is expected to be completed by the fall of 2016.

EPC's projects around the metro include The Village at Mission Farms, Highlands Lodge and Avenue 80 in Overland Park; Mission 106 in Leawood; Savannah West and BarreWoods in Kansas City; The Domain at City Center in Lenexa; and MidPoint Corporate Center in Edwardsville.

Copaken Brooks ranks No. 9 on the Kansas City Business Journal's list of top area commercial real estate firms with 16 agents.

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