Big downtown Kansas City TIF plan is coming to an end

The Civic Mall TIF plan began in 1994 to create Ilus Davis Mall. The federal courthouse is on the north end of the mall.
The Civic Mall TIF plan began in 1994 to create Ilus Davis Mall. The federal courthouse is on the north end of the mall. Special to The Star

Kansas City’s Civic Mall TIF plan, launched in 1994 to create Ilus Davis Mall and assist other redevelopment in the northeast section of downtown, is nearing an end.

The Tax Increment Financing Commission on Wednesday recommended to the City Council that the plan be amended to retain only one remaining redevelopment project, a McCownGordon office building at 422 Admiral Blvd.

The large TIF plan included 33 redevelopment projects at the outset. Previous plan amendments terminated or repealed six projects, 10 proposals were never approved and 11 were never pursued. Six projects were completed under the plan.

Those completed projects included the new federal courthouse, a Federal Aviation Administration building and parking lots in addition to the mall that stretches north from City Hall.

Completion of a TIF plan means that taxes that had been abated will now flow to the school district and other taxing jurisdictions.

According to taxing information provided to the commission, the completed projects helped property in the plan area grow from an initial assessed value of about $7.8 million to about $38.5 million. That total reflects construction and improvements that aren’t specifically part of the Civic Mall TIF plan.

Economic Development Corp. official Bob Long reported to TIF commissioners that final payments on the bonds issued in connection with the Civic Mall TIF plan took place in December. Except for the continuing project at 422 Admiral, no other costs remain under the plan, he said.

About $1.7 million in surplus funds, including about $1.4 million in payments in lieu of taxes, is to be remitted to the affected taxing districts, including the city, Kansas City Public Schools, Jackson County, Kansas City Public Library, Metropolitan Community College and mental health, blind and disabled funds.

Long noted that none of the redevelopment costs associated with the federal courthouse or the FAA Building was reimbursable.

“Those two projects were, in effect, ‘revenue generators’ to help pay for Ilus Davis Park. The other individual project areas being terminated were also revenue generators for the Ilus Davis Park bond debt service and had no reimbursable costs,” Long said.

Termination of the Civic Mall TIF plan doesn’t affect other redevelopment plans in the general area that are proceeding under public incentives obtained through the Land Clearance for Redevelopment Authority and the Planned Industrial Expansion Authority. Such projects as the large Pickwick Hotel renovation at Ninth and Oak streets aren’t part of the TIF plan.

Long said the Civic Mall TIF plan resulted in the creation of 56 jobs, the retention of 316 jobs and the development of 438 new housing units. He said the projects paid $17.2 million in lieu of their abated property taxes under the plan.

Diane Stafford: 816-234-4359, @kcstarstafford