Country Club Plaza

Co-Office provider giant, Industrious, heads to Plaza

Industrious, the largest premium flexible workspace provider in the U.S., has signed on to take 30,000 SF on the Country Club Plaza (420 Nichols Road).

Known for its professional atmosphere and thoughtfully-designed spaces intended to increase productivity, Industrious highlights its focus on providing members with an elevated hospitality-driven workplace experience.  

“Kansas City is a dominant market in the Silicon Prairie. As one of the largest and fastest-growing tech hubs in North America, it made sense for Industrious to have a presence in the region,” said Justin Stewart, president and co-founder of Industrious. “Our existing relationships with Macerich and Taubman led us to Country Club Plaza, a highly-amenitized and desirable area that our members will love. We look forward to supporting the ongoing growth of companies across Kansas City.”

This is Industrious’s third location with Macerich, who currently owns 51 million SF of real estate consisting primarily in 47 regional shopping centers.

This is also Industrious’s second location with Taubman Centers, an S&P MidCap 400 Real Estate Investment Trust engaged in the ownership, management and/or leasing of regional, super-regional and outlet shopping centers in the U.S. and Asia.

“The addition of Industrious further solidifies our position as the market-dominant shopping center,” said Meredith Keeler, general manager at Country Club Plaza. “Our patient curation of new tenants for the Plaza continues to create excitement and expand our customer base.”

Across the country, Industrious members include large, well-known companies such as Pfizer, Hyatt, Airbus, Pandora, Lyft, Pinterest, and more. Industrious currently has over 80 locations across more than 40 U.S. cities. Industrious Country Club Plaza will offer co-working and private offices for teams of various sizes and is expected to be open for business Q3 2019.

Kelly Construction Group expands reach, builds new headquarters

The Great Recession may have dried up projects and forced many general contractors out of business, but it also created an opportunity for Scott Kelly, Jason Betts and Travis Lourens. The trio worked together before the downturn and were determined to leverage their respective expertise and positive relationships into a new, diverse construction company.

“Things started slowing down and the economy slowed to the point that you had to recreate your business a bit and make sure you were staying in relationship with your clients,” said Scott Kelly, president of Kelly Construction Group, Inc. “So we started talking about how we could take our existing customer base, maintain those relationships and work through a difficult time with the expectation it was going to pick back up.”

The former colleagues launched Kelly Construction Group in 2011, blending Scott’s healthcare expertise with Travis’ municipal and government experience and Jason’s book of business that included developers, retailers and hospitality groups. That decision has paid off, with 2 million square feet currently under construction and the company on target to reach its most recent five-year master plan goals in half the time.

“Establishing and maintaining and nurturing relationships, that’s the key. We’re not going to be everything to everyone, but our company is the right size for a lot of projects—not too small but not too big,” Lourens said. “We are schedule driven and we expect people who work for us to be part of our team and be committed to the same goals.”

Kelly Construction has landed projects for top companies such as Cerner, KCP&L, Merck and UMB, as well as just about every metro-area hospital group including Saint Luke’s Health System, KU Medical Center, Shawnee Mission Medical Center, Children’s Mercy Hospital, and HCA.

In the past two years, Kelly Construction has almost doubled its headcount to 36, prompting it to build a new 20,000-square foot corporate office in Grandview’s SouthPointe Business Park. Recent projects include the conversion of 650,000 square feet of office space for Cerner in South Kansas City, more than 250,000-square feet of tenant improvements for Lee’s Summit’s Summit Technology Campus, and a new parking garage for Shawnee Mission Medical Center, as well as the upscale The Monarch Bar on the Country Club Plaza.

“The Monarch was the first notable project for this type of venue in many years that wasn’t a chain. It’s more of a boutique, standalone space with high-end finishes,” Betts said. “The architect (David Manica) had a vision and he felt we understood that vision.”

Maintaining client relationships has been key to Kelly’s success. With the construction market sizzling, the company remembers the lessons of the past and is focused on smart, controlled growth.

“One of the biggest things we talk about is making sure we meet or exceed expectations on any project. That’s our focus,” Kelly said. “We don’t aspire to be the biggest firm. We want to be known for doing what we say we’re going to do and where we can still feel like one of the three of us has given personal attention to every project we build.”

Above: Kelly Construction Group principals include Travis Lourens, Jason Betts and Scott Kelly. 

Retail finds stride as e-commerce builds momentum

Retail finds stride as e-commerce builds momentum

As the retail market climbs its way out of the recession. As it rebounds, retailers and property owners are cautiously optimistic as they look for ways to adapt to the rise of e-commerce. According to LANE4 Property Group's latest report, Kansas City experienced conservative growth as well as a few encouraging signs of growth and opportunity.

Country Club Plaza names new general manager

New owners of the Country Club Plaza – Taubman and The Macerich Company – have tapped a new leader to manage Kansas City’s crown jewel. Meredith Keeler, a 20-year veteran of the industry, will take over as general manager and assume responsibility for operations, office, retailer and community relations, as well as marketing for the shopping center.

“There’s a vibrant energy in Kansas City and I’m thrilled to be part of the community’s unique history and charm,” Keeler said. “Country Club Plaza is incredibly iconic and I look forward to delivering a truly unique shopping and dining experience to both local residents and visitors.”

Most recently, Keeler served as general manager of the Stamford Town Center in Stamford, Conn., and also served as director of marketing for all Taubman Centers.

Taubman Centers is an S&P MidCap 400 Real Estate Investment Trust engaged in the ownership, management and/or leasing of 23 regional, super-regional and outlet shopping centers in the U.S. and Asia. Taubman’s U.S.-owned properties are the most productive in the publicly held U.S. regional mall industry. Taubman is currently developing four properties in the U.S. and Asia totaling 4.1 million square feet. Founded in 1950, Taubman is headquartered in Bloomfield Hills, Mich. Taubman Asia, founded in 2005, is headquartered in Hong Kong.