Leawood leaders say a just-approved $135 million mixed-used project along 135th Street near State Line Road may be exactly what the city needs to energize development activity on the east end of the well-traveled corridor.
Lashbrook Cos. on Monday received city approval for its development south of 135th Street between Kenneth Road and Chadwick, which includes 117 high-end villas, 182 luxury apartments, and retail space. The project also includes plans for an 81-unit assisted living facility developed by Johnson County Management.
“I’ve said for a long time that this is a great corridor, but it just needs a kickstart. It needs something to happen to bring the momentum,” said Bob Regnier, president of Bank of Blue Valley and whose family owns the land. “Rick (Lashbrook) has great product and the timing is right.”
The development strays from 135th Street Corridor development guidelines adopted by the Leawood City Council in 2013, so securing approval required some give-and-take.
“This is a good compromise and allows for forward movement. Just since the announcement, I have received a couple phone calls from people interested in that area,” Regnier said. “A nice project like this is announced, and all the sudden people are talking about it. People see the possibility.”
In addition to filling strong demand for attached villa-type property in Leawood, the project will allow the City to connect 137th Street from Kenneth Road to Metcalf Avenue.
“That route, like 133rd on the north side of 135th, will become a major east-west connector for not only vehicles, but for pedestrian and bicycle traffic as well,” said Kevin Jeffries, president and CEO of the Leawood Chamber & Economic Development Council. “The office, retail, multifamily, and senior living components proposed for later phases will also be a welcome addition to the 135th Street Corridor.”
Construction on the unnamed project is set to begin in late 2019 with completion expected 2-3 years later.