VML remains in downtown KC with $17M lease

VML's headquarters will undergo a renovation and add an additional 30,000 square feet.

The Kansas City Council late Thursday afternoon approved a lease that will keep global advertising agency VML in the downtown area.

The firm, which has 2,500 total employees in 28 offices across 6 continents, has called the Charles B. Wheeler Airport home for more than two decades. Now, thanks to a deal negotiated by Brent Roberts and Brian Bacon of CBRE, VML will not only remain in its downtown airport space, but will expand its headquarters by an additional 30,000 square feet for a total of nearly 100,000 square feet.

"VML has been our tenant partner since 1995, merely three years after John Valentine, Scott McCormick and Craig Ligibel founded the agency," Kansas City Director of Aviation Pat Klein said. "We have seen VML grow from a small space in the former airport terminal to nearly 100,000 square feet of space. The large, unique space with an aeronautical view gives the agency room to grow as a company and a partner."

The eleven-year lease includes an option for an additional ten years. The city will receive $17 million in rent throughout the terms of the lease.

With the renovation of the existing space and additional buildout, VML will consolidate other staff from a second location at 2020 Baltimore into one space at the airport.

Founded in Kansas City, VML will celebrate its 25th anniversary in 2017.