KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Kansas City officials say they’ve secured historic preservation status for Kemper Arena.
The National Park Service made the decision last week to list the arena on the National Register of Historic Places, The Kansas City Star (http://bit.ly/2czE5PQ ) reported. That makes the arena eligible for tax credits.
City manager Troy Schulte says the decision allows officials to move forward to redevelop the arena as an amateur sports complex. The city hopes to transfer ownership of the arena to Foutch Brothers by the end of this year for the $25 million to $30 million project.
The project calls for adding a second floor to the structure and more than doubling the arena’s capacity for indoor soccer, basketball, volleyball, gymnastics, dance, fitness, running, biking and other sports.
Kemper Arena will be renamed Mosaic Arena under an agreement with Mosaic Life Care, which will operate a clinic out of the arena that will be open to the public and will have specialists in sports medicine.
Historic preservation consultant Elizabeth Rosin says the 42-year-old arena represents “a specific point in time” in the late 1960s and early 1970s when many cities built multipurpose arenas that became community gathering spots for concerts, sports and other entertainment.
Kemper Arena gained even more significance because it wasn’t torn down like arenas in other cities when a newer, more modern arena was built.
Rosin prepared the application for the national historic designation.
Information from: The Kansas City Star, http://www.kcstar.com