Zona Rosa in Kansas City under new management

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- A real estate firm based in Fort Worth, Texas is hoping to improve a shopping center in Kansas City.

Officials announced Monday that Zona Rosa is now under the management of Trademark Property Company. The center was previously under the management of Olshan Properties based out of New York.

The 1.1 million-square shopping, dining and entertainment center located at the intersection of Interstate 29 and Barry Road, just minutes away from the Kansas City International Airport faced financial trouble earlier this year after failing to cover bond payments for a 10th-straight year.

When Zona Rosa expanded in 2007, the Platte County Commission backed bonds for its infrastructure. The development is obligated to pay $2 million per year to hold up its end of the deal.

A one-cent sales tax collected by Zona Rosa businesses is supposed to help. But every year, it's fallen short. In 2017, the mall missed the mark by $500,000.

Trademark Property Co. CEO Terry Montesi said they are excited to help write the next chapter of its story and come up with ways to better serve its market.

Just over 50 percent of storefronts in Zona Rosa are occupied. With growing online sales and fewer people shopping at brick-and-mortar retailers, the concerns about the mall making future payments is very real.

“We have a strong track record of uncovering the hidden potential in these types of complex properties, and we see a big opportunity at Zona Rosa, Montesi said.

The company said strategic planning has already begun  with input from the local community.