This is why Wichita moved forward with Riverfront Stadium replacing Lawrence-Dumont Stadium: EPC Real Estate Group and the Wichita Wind Surge (Double-A Central) announced $65 million in new development next to the new ballpark.
The development in the city’s Delano neighborhood will be built on a lot sold by the city to the Wind Surge for $1 as part of the deal to bring affiliated baseball back to Wichita. (In total the city sold four acres to the team for $1 per acre.) Improving the riverfront area by activating the old ballpark space–which consisted of Lawrence-Dumont Stadium and a sea of parking–was a goal for the city’s ballpark investment as well. This new development exceeds the commitment made by the team during negotiations for the new ballpark financing.
The new development will include an eight-story, 150-room hotel, a a six-story office building and a 200-spot parking structure. Up to $5 million in tax increment financing will be used to fund the parking structure. From the Wichita Eagle:
In March 2019, the city made an agreement with the team that stipulated timeline and performance requirements the team had to meet over its first three phases of developing land adjacent to the ballpark in order to continue to have options to develop the rest of the land.
[Assistant city manger Scot] Rigby said the original first two phases were supposed to include about 50,000 square feet of retail and were projected to bring a benefit to the city of $18.6 million in tax revenue.
With what he’s calling “the new first phase,” Rigby said the immensity of the development will bring not only that projected $18.6 million but another projected $19.5 million.
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