KC City Council to hold hearing on proposed hotel

KANSAS CITY, Mo. —The Kansas City Council has delayed a vote on seeking development offers for a proposed convention hotel and instead will hold a public hearing on the idea this week.

Council members had been expected to consider a recommendation from its hotel steering committee to seek developer proposals for the project. The advisory group said that would give the city a better handle on the potential cost of the proposed 1,000-room hotel and what public assistance would be necessary. One estimate has put the hotel cost at $315 million.

Instead, City Council member Deb Hermann asked for the resolution to be referred to the Planning and Zoning Committee for a public hearing. The committee meets at 1:30 p.m. Wednesdays in City Hall.

"I understand we've had a lot of hotel steering committee and subcommittee meetings, and they have been public," she said, "but I wanted to afford an opportunity for the public to come to the council."

This would be the first council vote on the convention hotel concept since it established the steering committee last summer.

Council member Cindy Circo, co-chairwoman of the hotel steering committee, said the resolution seeking requests for proposals will probably be approved, noting it has 11 council members as co-sponsors. The measure would not obligate the city to pursue the hotel project.

The resolution also calls for the council to support the steering committee recommendation that a proposed hotel be built on the block at 14th Street and Baltimore Avenue, where the historic Power & Light Building is located.

A separate ordinance that would have the city pay $250,000 to secure a one-year option on the Power & Light Building and adjoining property required for a hotel project also is expected to be considered by the council this week. A preliminary option the city has on the property expires June 21.