Eight proposals could bring multi-million dollar revitalization to KC’s urban core

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- A plan to pour millions of dollars in to rejuvenate KC's urban core is now coming to life.

On Wednesday, city leaders heard plans that some say are needed for the struggling area.

"39th and Prospect is the heartbeat of Kansas City," said Pat Clarke with the Oak Park Neighborhood Association.

Eight projects now on the table could make the pulse of this area even stronger. If they get the green light from the City Council, they'll be paid for with a 2017 tax approved by voters.

"This is something that's long overdue," Clarke said. "Oak Park has been overlooked for quite sometime."

The five-member Central City Economic Development Sales Tax Board presented those eight projects before the council housing committee. The board believes those plans will tackle some of the areas most pressing needs, including housing and economic development.

"We have houses and buildings that needed to be torn down years ago, and it's gotten worse," Clarke said.

One of those projects: A nearly $3 million project to build a 29-unit affordable housing project at 38th and Prospect.

Another proposal would include a hotel, retail space and housing at 63rd and Prospect.

Clarke said he's seen the best and the worst of the area. With years of neglect, crime, prostitution and more plaguing the area, he believes the projects are what the area needs to come back to life.

"All we have is the Aldi and the church that are thriving up in that area," he said.

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