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Local Developer to Acquire Metro North Mall

MARCH 24, 2015


Spencer R. Thomson
Thomson Walker, LLC




Local Developer to Acquire Metro North Mall

The wait may finally be over. Local development entity IAS Partners, Ltd. has agreed to purchase the Metro North Mall from MD Management. The financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed. This marks a historic day for the Kansas City northland landmark as long-stalled plans for the Mall may now finally proceed.

Located at U.S. Highway 169 and Barry Road, Metro North Mall was for decades a hub of retail activity for the northland. For the past several years the Mall has been barely occupied with only a handful of small tenants that continued to operate after most of the anchor department stores such as Dillard’s had long since left.  The Mall itself has been closed since April, 2014 and all that remains open for business today are the Macy’s store and three restaurants along Barry Road.

Patrick Hayes, President of IAS Partners, Ltd. has had his eye on the Mall for a while now due in part to its similarities to other regional malls he has successfully redeveloped including the Blue Ridge Mall in eastern Kansas City off I-70 and the Antioch Center, also in the Kansas City northland, where redevelopment is still ongoing.

“Our development team is very excited at the many possibilities for Metro North and we look forward to working with the community and the City of Kansas City to redevelop the area in a manner similar to our successes at Blue Ridge and Antioch Center”, Hayes said.

If results of these past projects are any indication, Kansas City may finally get its wish for a redeveloped Metro North Mall.  Second District, At-Large Councilman Ed Ford could not have been more pleased upon hearing that the Mall was under contract to IAS Partners, Ltd.

“The redevelopment and revitalization of Metro North Mall has been a primary goal of mine since rejoining the City Council almost eight year ago.  It is very important for the continued success of the Kansas City Northland that the Mall once again be an integral part of the area commercial activity.  Kansas City cannot afford to have such an important parcel of ground sit underutilized.  To have a development team with a proven track record of working in public-private partnership with the City to redevelop malls is exactly what Metro North Mall needs”, Ford was quoted as saying.

Per an MD spokesperson:  “MD Management is excited about the future of Metro North Mall and the Barry Road corridor. This is the beginning of a new chapter for Metro North Mall and the surrounding area.  Our vision was an enclosed mall, but finding the right tenant mix in the current retail environment proved difficult.  It is time for a fresh perspective on this prime development ground.  MD Management will continue its efforts to enhance several of the surrounding commercial and residential properties alongside the new Metro North Mall development.”

Spencer Thomson, principal with Thomson Walker, LLC, and the attorney who has represented Hayes’ development companies in the redevelopment of both Blue Ridge Mall and Antioch Center, also had high praise for the development team and the prospects for Metro North Mall. “As a lifelong resident of Clay County I am thrilled to be able to participate in the future redevelopment of Metro North Mall.  It is truly a Northland landmark that is centrally located and well positioned to thrive once again”, Thomson stated.

Thomson said he expects to move swiftly to apply for the necessary economic development incentives from the City so that redevelopment can proceed as quickly and efficiently as possible.  “There is always a certain amount of delay inherent in the development process, but we’ve been very excited at the reception we’ve received in discussing the acquisition, incentives and redevelopment plans with City officials,” said Thomson.

Thomson said he expects the developer to seek tax increment financing as well as other local incentives for the project and expects that the City will be receptive to the developer’s request given the importance of the site to the community.

“The City is deeply invested in the success of the area around the Metro North Mall,” he said. “Construction started in 2013 on a City-financed project that will sewer 15,000 acres in the northland and will ultimately yield construction of approximately 21,000 homes for nearly 70,000 additional residents. The City’s commitment to the northland requires that commercial anchors like the Metro North Mall once again prosper to help support the residential expansion the City has provided the infrastructure for.”






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