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Booming demand for Downtown homes prompts extensive construction projects

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Demand for downtown living continues to grow as leasing has started for the second of four planned apartment towers in the Power and Light District.

A new 24-story apartment tower won't be ready for people to move in for another year and a half, and yet 26 of the new apartments already have been leased.

And another 200 are on a list.

The Cordish Company's $120 million Two Light project will add nearly 300 homes to downtown.

The one- and two-bedroom units appeal to single professionals who want to live where they work. And empty nesters like the convenience of living on the streetcar line, where virtually everything they need is within walking distance.

"If you are going to be part of a movement or a revitalization of a downtown, if you work downtown you should live downtown," said Gigi Girone, who moved to downtown Kansas City from Los Angeles. "But it is mainly the excitement of a new downtown now with the new buildings that make it that much more exciting."

A year ago at this time Cordish was getting ready to open more than 300 homes in its first apartment tower, One Light. The company says that building is now fully leased.

Kansas City expects to gain 3,000 new apartments in the city's core. One-bedroom units downtown for less than $1,000 a month are in short supply. The new Two Light tower offers apartments for $1,650 a month.

Three more apartment projects also are planned for the River Market.

And there's a 12-story apartment building underway in the Crossroads. The boom is driving up construction costs, which in turn is fueling higher rents for the new homes.