Old-World Charm To An Up-To-Date City

by Brett Merz

Park Place Brings Old-World Charm To An Up-To-Date City


Overheard at Park Place: “This is a hand holding kind of place.”

Yep, love is definitely in the air: a suburban mixed-use property that combines the European urban node model with the Middle-American modernity of Kansas City.

KBS acquired Park Place for its KBS REIT III portfolio in June of 2015, two years after development was completed. In addition to the KBS-owned office and retail space, Park Place also offers both residential units and a hotel.

CBRE associate director Kelly Barton and marketing manager Amy Kraft tell us that the Park Place concept never let go of that hand-holding idea — that unmistakable mix of intimacy and walkability.  Careful, intentional consideration was given to atmosphere, from the height of the buildings to the width of the streets, and especially the community green space.

“We wanted it to feel like a village,” Amy says.

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Park Place (NEC 117th Street & Nall Avenue, Leawood, KS) is located in Kansas City’s South Johnson County submarket. KBS’s ownership includes a rentable area of 483,119 SF (retail and office space).

Leawood is considered one of the wealthiest and fastest-growing zip codes in the Kansas City metro. with an average household income of $158k and an average household buying income of $127,973.

That’s a landlord’s dream for 2017 — a population with a taste for urban energy and a disdain for big-box, national chain shopping. As well, the property’s hip office space appeals to Millennials who are rejecting the soullessness of suburban corporate centers — and the suburbs as a whole.

“The concept is attracting trendy, forward-thinking companies,” Kelly adds.

Its biggest office tenant to date: AMC Theaters, housing its global headquarters and recently expanding into a second space.

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Popular among startups, entrepreneurs and young companies: a Regus co-working space offering flexible work areas and featuring onsite support and conference rooms.

A property with the urban node flavor of Park Place creates a work environment that attracts the best and most talented employees. Office tenants have access to a hotel with conferencing facilities, over 40 retail locations and restaurants, and three fitness centers.

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Drilling down, the property currently offers 111k SF of retail, 372k SF of office and 177 residential units which are not owned by KBS. The restaurant scene serves every appetite: fast-casual, grab and go, and sit down.

“For lunch, you can pick something quick and take it back to your office,” Kelly says, “or you can impress a client at an upscale steakhouse. You get to do all of that on the property — just walk out the front door. Tenants tell us that quick and affordable options are important to them, and we’re focusing on that request.”

The convenience and fun doesn’t stop there. Park Place also offers salons, summer concerts, happy hours, valet parking, and even a boutique to get your dog groomed. And what’s a romantic, hand-holding walk without bringing your dog along?

Click here to find out more about Park Place.


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Mr. Merz is a senior vice president and asset manager for KBS Realty Advisors and its affiliate KBS Capital Advisors. As a part of the Central Region team, Mr. Merz oversees a portfolio size of seven assets containing approximately 4.1 million square feet.