OVERLAND PARK, Kan. — A slice of Johnson County history could have a new future.
Developers hope to convert a nearly-100 year old church into a boutique hotel. Business planners hope to target young, hip clientele as their customer base.
The former location of the Overland Park Presbyterian Church, which stands at 81st and Overland Park Drive, may welcome a new congregation soon — as hotel guests.
The building has been vacant for six years. A post on the City of Overland Park website shows developers envision 30 guest rooms, each with an eclectic feel, and a speakeasy in the hotel’s lower level.
Brad Moore, who leads the Overland Park Historical Society, has records that match the building’s cornerstone, dating the church building’s establishment in 1929.
Moore’s group has a copy of the original blueprints for the building, old black and white photos, and the original stained glass windows. The building’s current owners donated the windows to the historians five years ago.
“It’s such a symbol of Overland Park from the 1930s up through six years ago,” Moore said. “So many things happened in that church. To think that it could have been torn down is heartbreaking, so I’m really grateful that the owners came up with this idea of a boutique hotel.”
An architect on site showed FOX4 camera the interior on Friday, which is in pretty good shape, considering the building has been empty for six years. Renders posted in the church’s former sanctuary show planned areas for meeting space.
Angie Mutti, who organizes the Downtown Overland Park Partnership, said business operators in the city’s downtown have always wanted a boutique hotel. Mutti said they’re excited by the potential traffic it could bring to the city’s unique downtown.
“We’ve been wanting one for years now — especially a boutique hotel because of the vibe that is downtown Overland Park. It’s kind of eclectic, unique environment for the Overland Park communities,” Mutti said on Friday.
The Overland Park Presbyterian Church moved to a new location in 2016. Moore believes hotel guests will want to learn more about the building — and the city’s downtown, too.
The project still needs city approval. It will go before the city planning commission on Dec. 12.
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