Tony: P&L District Dead On Winter Weekdays

It’s just a fun fact that on most weekday nights Downtown Kansas City is just as dead as it has ever been.

Sure, there’s an event at the Sprint Center that provides the illusion of density or a productive development but for the most part inside the loop is still a wasteland after 5 in the PM.

Proof: I was just walking downtown and noticed more homeless people than the desired demographic from Johnson County. And let’s face it, with every year that goes by the P&L District is much further away from paying back that multimillion dollar subsidy from KC Proper that some politicos have described as toxic.

As always there are very real reasons behind this failure that nobody wants to take the blame for. Let’s look at just a few:

1. Kansas City Party People Are Fickle. Sure, the P&L District was the place to be for its first year and even the second. But over the long term just about every party district in KC has experienced a rise and fall. From Westport to the River Key. Local party people move on to the next hotspot in a moment’s notice. Look for upcoming developments in the suburbs to attract the crowds within the next year.

2. Corporate fare just isn’t as fun. To their credit, the P&L District is working on attracting more local vendors and establishments. But the place has already been branded as a corporate hangout and they’ll have to work hard to change that image.

3. The racial ruckus over the dress code didn’t help. Like it or not, most people don’t want to feel like d-bag elitists when they hang out. And the struggle over diversity and under the table worries about the racial composition of the crowd in a downtown venue made for a tense opening. The place is just now starting to recover.

4. Lack of a Sprint Center anchor tenant has hurt The P&L District. If leaders in Kansas City would have been able to deliver on their promise to attract a pro-sports team to Kansas City then Kansas City’s premiere downtown party district would have done better out of the gate. Sadly, as time goes by the arena and the District just get older and the odds of landing a team which would provide a lucrative crowd on several nights throughout the week is nothing more than a pipe dream.

5. Expensive beer. If Wesport survives it’s because the beer is cheap. We’re in Kansas City and many a club owner has failed to realize that cheap beer is what drives a crowd with working class or backwoods roots. No matter the upscale aspirations of any party zone. Cheap beer will always move the crowd in Kansas City. The P&L District inability to recognize this homespun fact is to their detriment.

For these reasons and many more (along with the cold), the crowds at P&L aren’t what they should be during the winter work week. And once again Kansas City’s Renaissance seems like yet another scheme developed by politicos with little experience in the business world.

Tony Botello
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27 Responses to Tony: P&L District Dead On Winter Weekdays

  1. Anonymous says:

    wow tony…another stupid blog…unsubstantiated
    claims…ignorant statements and pure lies.
    What have we come to expect from you.
    1. River key: tony. wrong again buddy. If you
    ever got out of your basement you could have
    read or heard taht the river area was doing fine.
    People didnt hopto another area because it was
    a fad. The control of the area was in doubt
    and the warring factions destroyed the
    area..not because people went somewhere else
    that was hot.
    2. “upcoming developements” in the suburbs will
    take crowds away from p and l. Wrong again.
    The head of the area acknowledges that joco
    residentsare not coming into the p and l.
    They’ve tried different strategies to overcome
    this including a transit system that would
    bring joco people into the area. It never got
    off the ground. Jo co people have never been
    on the radar for the p and l. So wheres the
    next developement in the suburb. Tell me where
    its coming because most devleopement in joco
    has become non existent…especially bars/
    clubs. Few clubs can survive. One at 143rd and
    metcalf shut down after offering cheap martinis
    and beers. Raouls according to the owner is
    hanging on. Cheap drinks are keeping saints
    and a few other places open but the hottest
    spots including ra in town center are serving
    up $8-$10 drinks and wines. So there’s nothing
    cheap going on except in the palces that want
    to attract a “working class” crowd.
    However…there are some businesses doing well
    in the pand l…mosaic and most of the other
    bars are doing well. Weekday nights are still
    pretty dead. But they are dead everywhere.
    The dui rage has hurt the panc l but for their
    mardi gras party this last weekend the crowds
    were very good…it still attract a crowd on
    weekends which many of the managers agree keeps
    the area vital.
    The lack of a strong tenant has defintely hurt.
    But if you look at the head of the group that
    promised kc a pro team you know why its been
    a problem. Liewicke (sp) has a histroy of taking
    kc for a ride as he did back 20 years ago.
    KC won’t get apro team. The economics are not
    good enough for a pro team…and the city leaders
    who bought this con deal knew it.
    Despite what the local pols crooks tellyou..
    localo ownership of a pro ssports team is
    really essential to success. There are few
    teams who are successful who have absentee owners. But in kc who will pony up the
    200 million bucks for a team. The leaders or
    big money people are too conservative.
    Kaufman’s dead…the heirs to thebig money
    in this city have no desire to lose millions…
    there’s few if any large corporate sponsors to
    help pay the bills…and this media market
    sucks in paying rights fees.
    So what’s left. A shell of a building that
    is occupied when washed up old rock bands or
    one vhit wonders travel thru for a quick
    And the p and l has never been accussed of
    being a corporate hangout. Its a network of
    highly contrived operations who’s main focus was to generate big bucks for the de veloper while
    the city held the bag.
    Expensive beer: whys that a problem. Even sports
    bars are vselling beers for 5 bucks these days.
    And you get nothing for it. The ones who make it
    usually have a local feel and a niche market
    catering to a sports crowd.
    I still believe the dui problems have hurt
    the p and l the most. Why drive 30 minutes to
    get a drink only to find the cops have set up
    roadblocks and they treat you like your a
    murderer. Its too costly both to your wallet
    and your future when the money hungry cities
    send their people out constantly to haul in
    thousand of dui dollars.
    The economy really has shaken the p and l…as
    it has every business. the young crowds that
    were the target have felt a harsh economy take
    money out of their pockets. It’s hurt every
    restaurant and bar in this exceptions.
    And when the weather people scream poor weather
    every night it maqkes it even more difficult
    to make a buck. People cut out those extra
    expenses…and every bar/club owner feels it.
    More importantly its a sign of what not only
    ails the nation but the city of kcmo.
    They borrowed their ases off to make this
    huge imp[act downtown. With no laqrge hotel its
    a bad deal. Union station was destined from the
    start to go down. The whole concept lacked any
    real visionary to culminate it into a single
    profitable venture.
    But just like people with credit cards…kcmo
    roled the dice and right now are losing.
    With a bad economy..losing somem ajor conventions…people cutting back …a perfect
    storm hit kcmo and the people responsible are
    now banking their millions whiile the city
    lies in financial red ink.
    Their businesx plan was wrong from the start.
    It failed because everyone got on the gravy train
    and cahsed in on the belief taht it would work.
    I’m sure payoffs and under the table deals
    occurred. It was a fantasy to think this whole
    scam would pay off.
    KCMO will go the way of the nation. IN debt
    without enough revenues to keep it running.
    And it wasn’t the democrats who are responsible.
    IN kansas we have a 400 million dollar shortfall
    that was caused by repubs and dems spending like
    drunk kids at the p and l.
    Now we’re in hock…waiting for the day of
    And it looks bleak. But if kcmo dies (which
    it now looks like its on life support) the
    joco suburbs will become the new central focus
    of this area. Lets just shut down kcmo…take
    the losses and move everything out to kansas.
    Too many liars and cheats caused this mess.
    But there’s noone to clean it up.
    We’re just plain stupid hicks in a wal mart
    town and its starting to catch up with usreal

  2. Anonymous says:

    Good blast..jj and Tony..
    I never figured out why they built that with out open parking. I just don’t see people coming downtown from the suburbs be it JOCO,B.S.,LS
    Liberty…wherever…and park in a multi-level garages. That didn’t work for Sam’s Town either.
    Hell you can’t even get people from Crossroads to go there with out parking.

    It’s a shame Mr. Durwood wasn’t able to follow through with his plan to make UMKC a big time basketball program. Would of loved to seen the Roo’s land in MO Valley and give the City a big shot in the arm.

    Entertainment has gotten flat crazy in past 10 years…did I miss the memo that CW and Rock N Roll bands are worth $100-150 a seat? Movies for 2 with Popcorn and soda $40…Not sustainable. Lets be more like Branson…$30 for a night of entertainment $2 popcorn and $1.50 drinks. That’s where its at. I do like the Midland… I think they do a pretty good job!

  3. Anonymous says:

    Kyle Rohde
    The real sad thing is we already have an anchor tenant team here in KC that would have done so much to help downtown – the Royals.

    Think what the P&L and downtown would be like with a new Kauffman Stadium just east of the P&L. Packed bars/restaurants 81 times a year, transit development all around the stadium to allow easy entry/exit and development of a new residential neighborhood. All you have to do is go to Denver to see it works. And our shortsighted city decided to renovate the old stadium instead, leaving us with a giant parking lot with two renovated stadiums, supporting a Taco Bell, two hotels, a Dennys and a gas station.

  4. Anonymous says:

    kyle…great comments and congrats on posting
    your photo on this site.
    lodo in denver is incredible…i was there
    last summer and tried to go into every
    bar and restaurant…too many…and too myuch

  5. Anonymous says:

    Tony M
    Dress codes have nothing to do with racial diversity, or lack thereof. If you can’t be bothered to change out of your long tee or over sized jersey than just stay home, wherever that may be. The Brooksider for example was getting a little rough before they instituted dress codes back in the day. It seemed to nip the problem in the bud too.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Tony is 100 per cent correct and heres some inside JOJO, they never had weekday business, nobody, nobody, did I say it nobody lives downtown. Its a bust, loser and already bankrupt. Once again an idiot Mayor, Barnes, sold us a bill of goods,like Union Station,River Market, l8th and Vine, all losers. KCMO will likely never come back from this dumb move. The only one that made money was the first major bar to opne Mcfaddens, thats it.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Johnny Utah
    come on! it’s not just P&L that’s dead. everyplace is dead on winter weeknights in KC: plaza, waldo, brookside, joco… especially in a weak economy.

    but cost of food/drink is most certainly an issue. they have no one to blame on that one.

  8. Anonymous says:

    craig glazer
    First off, yes Tony is right, and of course the economy is part of it, and yes weeknights are tough nationwide…..however, their bars and two restaurants are not even open for the most part during the week and haven’t been for many months back to summer….It is a total failure and will not come back, cause like the guy above said NOBODY LIVES DOWN THERE…And we have no tourism to support it…The Plaza and all the other areas are open during the week, slow but open.

    It was a bad, dumb idea, had I been calling the shots, all that money would have gone into the Plaza,Brookside,Waldo,Westport and uppper middle class KCMO, the only fixable spots…thats what anyone with the slightest bit of know how would have done.

    But its water over the bridge, soon East St. Louis, I mean KCMO will fall deeper, if thats possible and it is….in less than l8 months almost all of the seven bars and two restaurants will not exist, unless they are replaced, go urban, but I don’t see that saving it. All the other Cordish spots failed as well, across America….our mayor maybe should have gotten on a plane and checked.

    I’m not being a hater, just a realist, race didn’t matter here…just so you will know hip hop is dying too, its for “older black” crowds, the younger ones, like the white kids, don’t go out much, they are online….sadly…too much….its not good…the world we grew up in is gone for now…it is hard to accept…but true.

  9. Anonymous says:

    kcmo needs new blood. Lurch (the mayor) is
    worthless. Wants to cut off stadium funding..
    real smart you idiot. Take that money and
    plow the streets during snowstorm. Hardly..
    lurch (the mayor) can’t show where all
    the tax dolars are going. its a bottomless
    Let kcmo die a death. Let joco become the
    focal point of the area. Grow joco until
    all the kcmo residents move in. Joco
    is beginning to look like kcmo on the north
    side of thecounty. Metcalf has been riddled
    with buy here pay here car lots…pay day loan
    stores…starting to look like indepedence avenue…
    I wondered about the numbers of people living
    downtwon…how many are there…and what
    do they do during the week.
    yes..the world is changing. Now we’ve replaced
    human contact with the internet. Thats life.

  10. Anonymous says:

    River Quay, not River “Key,” though it’s pronounced that way

  11. Anonymous says:

    newbaum turk
    Went to Ernie Biggs in Westport Saturday night and it was packed. I haven’t been to Westport in three years so I was glad to see it. I’m 40 so I don’t go out like I used to. Never been to P&L even thought I work down there. I have no desire to be around dbags in Affliction shirts while paying $6 a beer and a risky drive home. Personally, I like going out in Waldo. You can walk to about 7 different bars and you don’t have to walk the gauntlet like you do in Westport when it gets nice out.

  12. Anonymous says:

    can’t say
    I don’t get out much. Enjoy sucking c*ck at home!

  13. Anonymous says:

    Matt Helm
    The 10,000 room hotel will save the area

  14. Anonymous says:

    can’t say
    Opps I meant to say. Enjoy letting jojo suck my c*ck at home. You go dog.

  15. Anonymous says:

    That’s true plus I have no life
    that is why i spend hours each
    day responding to Tony blogs
    I don’t agree with and think r
    stuped. PS I may not be to
    bright but even i can tell kyle
    is cute. Thanks for the picture
    it will give me soemthing to
    think about 🙂

  16. Anonymous says:

    can’t say
    I learned to suck c*ck from a pro…my dad!

  17. Anonymous says:

    Rainbow Man
    Just say it. We know what hurt Westport. They opened those 600 plus head count labryinth dance clubs that welcomed gangsta rap. Stanford’s, Kelly’s and others had drink specials all of the time and no one was looking to get hurt. Go have a few pops, meet some girls. Go to work the next day. Then– when you walked out of Kelly’s at 2 to get your Torre’s slice before you went home… you were scared to death by the massive numbers of bystanders in the area yelling at your girlfriend.
    P&L opens massive mega head count late night dance clubs and then wonders why they have issues?
    And then, during the day, you can always have $20 fish and chips in a paper cone from a “Real” Irish Bar.
    I like places run by old school KC pros who know their market, and know how to manage a concept that keeps trouble out. This is not racism.
    When Westport screwed up, everyone started hitting 75th Street Brewery and Hoopers. Then Tanners started drawing peeps in several locations, before they got weird.
    P&L/ Sprint is a GREAT place to see a concert or a sporting event.
    It is not a great place to have a regular hangout.
    Westport is back. They are fixing their problems. I am too old to hit it on weekdays, or many weekends, now… But still consider it home..

  18. Anonymous says:

    uncle nick
    Can’t say: your mom wasn’t bad either. Swallower!

  19. Anonymous says:

    I’m can’t say’s dad. And I’m gay and believe in incest.

  20. Anonymous says:

    can’t say
    sorry. I made a boo boo. forgot who i was when i tried to post using jojo’s fake name. I’m usually
    okay but mom woke me up at 6am to take my medicine. She found my “girlie” magazines under the bed and now I’m grounded.

  21. Anonymous says:

    uncle nick
    STFU can’t say. Just keep sucking!

  22. Anonymous says:

    bill maas
    can’t say: I know some hot broads you could learn from about sucking c*ock. Just call me
    at 913 236 9800 and i’ll get you their names.
    These broads are gooooood and when you’re with
    your dad you can exchange inside secrets.

  23. Anonymous says:

    bobby knight
    hey can’t say: I’m sure you know how to
    “dribble on the balls” and know how to
    take a “slam dunk” but please don’t let anyone
    know your dad is queer. That’s family.

  24. Anonymous says:

    Uncle Dick
    Jojo I told you STFU and just keep sucking. And stop pretending you are someone else.

  25. Anonymous says:

    Can’t say
    Sad. He posts like 10 hrs under his own name and then another 5 hrs using others names. Wish he would find a friend to talk to.

  26. Anonymous says:

    Uncle Nick
    You mean counselor to talk to?

  27. Anonymous says:

    I stopped going to P and L for the same reason I stopped going to Westport years ago. Douchebags are everywhere and I’m just not real excited about that. I would stop for lunch or something like that but never go there after 9 or 10pm.

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