City staff to recommend against Union Station deal

WICHITA - City staff will recommend against a letter of intent for $90 million dollars in industrial revenue bonds to turn Union Station into a movie studio, Wichita City Manager Robert Layton said.

The proposal, from Union Station Studios LLC, a group headed by Wichitan Jackson Hill III, would have purchased the old Cox Communications headquarters and nearby property like the Spaghetti Works building.

The plan would have lured films and other productions to Wichita, Hill told The Eagle earlier this fall.

However, the city's vetting process revealed "too many things to proceed," Layton said.

The city manager did not elaborate, but in a pre-qualification questionnaire that Hill submitted to the city, obtained this week by The Eagle, the developer reported a pending $5,000 judgment against him by Bank of America Wichita, a discharged reorganization bankruptcy in California stemming from a divorce and two pending tax liens from the late 1970s in California totaling $29,500.

Read more on this story in Thursday's Eagle.