Tony: Sprint Center Success Only Highlights P&L District FAIL

River City has always been nothing more than a collection of not-so-complex contradictions.

We lament local violence and homicide and mark the tragedy of white people fallen victim to crime but then ignore so much death among people of color. We long for a government that works for “regular folks” when, in fact, the whole system is predicated on nothing less than keeping special interests happy. And worst of all, low self-esteem irrational exuberance regarding development by a cozy small town that’s remarkably different and some would say smarter than big city competitors and their expensive toys.

And all of this preamble is simply an effort to set the stage for a grand conclusion staring everyone right in the face: This town’s big gamble on the Downtown Renaissance never really paid off. Kansas City’s last big, shot at being a major league city met with remarkable failure.

So, we’re pretty much a horribly more violent and dangerous version of Omaha for the forseeable future.

Don’t worry, I have proof of this assertion.

To prove my axiom correct, look no further than The Sprint Center. So much celebration of this place overlooks one tiny, horribly inconvenient fact. I’ll pose it in the form of a question:

If the Sprint Center is sooooo great, such a success and a proof of the financial genius of former Mayor Kay Barnes . . . Then why hasn’t that success benefited the P&L District?

The fact is, the hype and hyperbole coming from The Sprint Center notes that the place is the second busiest and one of the best venues in the entire U.S. Still the runoff hasn’t been enough to keep the P&L District from bleeding red ink. Therefore, it is reasonable to suggest that the fate of the two are not intertwined. And that leaves KC without much hope of turning around its more expensive Downtown Experiment.

Additionally, I don’t really think The Sprint Center is all that big a deal, and for so much great PR the place doesn’t seem worth the price or the time for me to visit it. In much the same way that most Sprint Center visitors are skipping out on a P&L District excursion. So either KC’s Sprint Center celebration is overplayed or there’s no hope for The P&L District. Whatever the case, somebody has to lose and I have a sneaking suspicion that it’s probably Kansas City Taxpayers.

Tony Botello

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31 Responses to Tony: Sprint Center Success Only Highlights P&L District FAIL

  1. Anonymous says:

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  2. Anonymous says:

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  3. Anonymous says:

    mark x
    Thank you, Captain Obvious.

  4. Anonymous says:

    jojo
    was in p and l for the bellator fights..
    it was dead after the fights.
    It takes times and now you have other
    areas starting to take business back.
    Was at the well and waldo on saturday
    and they were packed……..
    p and li is a long drive…but as the economy
    picks up it should do better…
    remember….it was part of a downtown
    revitalization project and almost eery
    downtown district business is down..i heard
    lodo in denver is having money and business
    problems also…so were not alonge

  5. Anonymous says:

    Eric
    I was down in P&L a couple weeks ago for the Childhood Diabetes fund raiser where Buckcherry played a free show. P&L was packed and so were all the bars afterward. What hurts P&L is KC’s utter lack of affordable and convenient public transportation. If there was some sort of light rail running to the burbs and back for a fee of maybe 5 bucks round trip, P&L would be dragging in alot more business. When people go to P&L, they want to party and have a good time, not worry about getting a DWI on the way home. You’re other alternative is spending $100 or more on a hotel room downtown. Or a $50 cab ride home. P&L is a kick ass area and a great idea. I always have a blast down there.

  6. Anonymous says:

    JoHawk
    “I don

  7. Anonymous says:

    smartman
    Don’t forget to factor in the continued LO$$ from lack of operation at Kemper Arena.

    SC may be the second busiest venue for CONCERTS but when you factor in ALL EVENT DAYS no way that holds up when lots of venues, especially at this time of year, have NBA and NHL. More smoke and mirrors from AEG and Tim Lie-weekly.

    SC and P&L are still relatively new. The real proof is going to come AFTER the area hits the 10 year mark.

  8. Anonymous says:

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  9. Anonymous says:

    mojhawk
    No full time tennant at Sprint Center is a problem. As for the P&L district not enough people live downtown or they are not drinking enough. If they thought people with jobs were going to go down there consistently on week nights they were sadly mistaken the only place working people will go to on weeknights is neighborhood entertainment or the boats.

  10. Anonymous says:

    kcfan
    Sprint Center is doing great and P&L is making Cordish plenty of money. The deal wasn’t structured right for taxpayers so the tax payers are the ones losing money. P&L obviously isn’t 100% leased up, but it never took that for it to make money for the developer. The other thing you have to remember is P&L is far from it’s finished product. There was supposed to be a hotel/condo tower in there next to Cosentino’s, 3 more condo towers, and a 2nd office tower for H&R Block. There’s also very little housing close to P&L. It’s really just the start of a project that still needs further investment before it feeds it’s own success. And hopefully it’s successful enough at some point that taxpayers don’t have to subsidize it any more.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Jere Svatek
    hey great information your site contains will return when I have time to read more.

  12. Anonymous says:

    chuck
    “We lament local violence and homicide and mark the tragedy of white people fallen victim to crime but then ignore so much death among people of color.”

    Tony’s comments on ANYTHING (The Hadron Collider, potholes on Wornall, Moon landings et al.) are prefaced by the obligatory guilt trip for all us white boys.

    I am barely sustained in the face of such reprobation. The obligatory, required bullshit accusations, by inference and implication, to all white people, is a unecessary non sequiter employed for derisive, divisive design and manipulation.

    Tony is the president, leader, captain and commander on this blog of the Culture of Complaint.

    The Bible of the Culture of Complaint, is the “Narrative”. A narrative, that blames anyone and everyone (Society, the “man”, racism, Republicans, Democrats, politics etc. etc.) for crimes committed by “Oppressed People Of Color”.

    The “Narrative” is an ongoing exculpatory rhetorical excercise that pardons, murder, rape, theft, thuggery stupidity and corucopia of criminal activity over the last 30 years.

    Constant reconstitution of the “Narrative” is his (Tony’s) wont, profession, and ultimatley, his excuse, for anti-social behaviour.

    The “Narrative” is a soul sucking succubus that enables “Oppressed People Of Color” to excuse a lack of initiative in the face of the unambiguated evidence of opportunity, and, ultimately, defeats them.

    The fucking President of the United States is Black Tony.

    His fucking name is Hussein.

    THAT, you fucking dipshit is equality.

    The implacable, inveterate, intransigent refusal of “Oppressed People Of Color” to take advantage of that opportunity, is a result of the “Narrative” that defeats them before they get out of bed.

    Me, I don’t feel guilty a bit. I am tired of hte “Narrative”.

    JMO, but I think that kid got beat to death by Amerca’s Pub.

    It was an opportunity too good to pass up I guess.

  13. Anonymous says:

    HaroldRamis
    damn chuck, that was awesome.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Eric
    Chuck,
    Well written and well said. Must be embarrassing for Tony to get owned in his own blog. Of course, he may not be smart enough to be embarrassed.

  15. Anonymous says:

    jjskck
    There was supposed to be a hotel/condo tower in there next to Cosentino

  16. Anonymous says:

    jojo
    i like p and l…but dont go down there because
    i don’t want to drink and drive back out to
    the “golden ghetto”>

  17. Anonymous says:

    Markus Aurelius
    I was going to respond to Tony’s initial non sequitor but then saw that Chuck beat me to the punch, but Chuck, lose the f-bombs. I’m not offended by them but all they do is diminish the impact of your earlier comments and cause some to tune you out. You’ve got an excellent point to make – don’t blow it with a few unnecessary expletives.

    As far as P&L, the three biggest factors effecting it: (1) the economy — it’s not the only downtown entertainment district struggling, (2) mass transit – the city desperately needs to tie all of these entertainment options together from the City Market to the Plaza (including downtown, arts district, CC, 18th and Vine, Westport in between), and (3) downtown housing — as the housing options increase so will the regular customers. Unfortunately, sustained development doesn’t happen overnight.

  18. Anonymous says:

    Duke
    Going to Roger Waters at Sprint Center Saturday. Cab from North of the River and back. My driveway to the Oak Street entrance and back. Pretty much like the SC. Not interested in P&L offerings. At all. And I used to live downtown for 8 years.

  19. Anonymous says:

    CMac
    tony, we get it already…you hate KC and white people. enough.

  20. Anonymous says:

    Man in the know
    Tony’s view is uniformed drivel; Markus is well informed.

    KC got 11 blocks of downtown redeveloped- where no activity had occurred for 25 years- the new development gives the convention folks something to market to bring visitors to Kansas City. Those folks previously could have visited 2 transvestite bars, a sometimes open Go-Go lounge, a tool & die shop, a formal wear rental shop, a haunted house or two and little else- pretty attractive for any out of towners who took the risk to walk around those blocks. The City had to do something to avoid becoming Detroit.

    Without the Cordish deal H & R Block and its permanent and construction jobs would have gone to 115th and Nall. H & R Block couldn’t have been more direct in that regard. Cordish didn’t underperform what they promised and didn’t receive any more money than called for in the contract- they have done a pretty good job leasing space in a bad economy- take a look at Merriam’s empty TIF financed shopping center for an example of how bad it is for leasing.

    The secret not well known is how Cauthen and his Denver consultants spent far too much money on infrastructure than was in any budget- such as conduit for telecom in the streets- and decided to finance the infrastructure through the P & L financing rather than using other resources such as water revenue bond debt. The lion’s share of the P & L debt relates to the infrastructure costs- not the funds made available to Cordish to develop its project.

    Those in the know also know that if we had someone with enough money interested in spending his/her capital on a team we would have an NHL team- but post 2008 Kansas City folks with the kind of money needed to buy a team and willing to spend it are hard to find. That isn’t anyone’s fault but it is a fact.

    Downtown, the City and the region are far better off with the 11 blocks redeveloped (and the follow on development such as the JE Dunn headquarters)- especially when you look at the development with a 25-35 year perspective and the otherwise bleak prospects for downtown.

    It is easy to criticize- far harder to get anything accompished that moves the region forward. The Co-Mayors have taken 3 1/2 years to learn that lesson.

  21. Anonymous says:

    smartman
    Boo-fuckin’-yah Chuck. You’ve been served Culo, 4 suburban tacos, 3 white guilt burritos with extra cheese and chili, 2 conservative tamales, 3 Tea Party quesadillas, 3 Glenn Beck beef enchiladas w/extra onions, the Sean Hannity combo taquito platter, sides of jojo’s guacamole, fideo, beans and rice. Anything else?

  22. Anonymous says:

    Mike
    Why do I want to go the the P&L? Is the music better that at Jerry’s Bait Shop in Lenexa or Lees Summit?

    Is it better than at the Beaumont?
    Are the BBQ places better than BB’s Lawn Side (music too)?
    I am sorry. You can slap lipstick on a pig….. but it is still downtown Kansas City. And why do you have to inject race into everything you write? Do you really think it makes it better?

    Kansas City Metro is an area of neighborhoods. When I lived near Waldo, I went to Tanners and 75th Street Brewery and BB’s. Now I live in Lees Summit and I go to Jerry’s and Tavern on Green Street (owned by Dick Schulte who was run out of Blaney’s in Westport by the P&L carry drinks in public policy that was not allowed for Westport).

    I still do not see any reason to go to downtown KC. Ever. Ever. Ever. Etc.

  23. Anonymous says:

    anon
    wow. I never thought i would feel sorry for Tony, but Chuck–that is GAME, SET and MATCH!!

  24. Anonymous says:

    jojo
    hey smartman…i don’t like guacamole….
    asshole!

  25. Anonymous says:

    MediaJunky
    BUILD THE FUCKING HOTEL AND SOLVE THE PROBLEM.

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  27. Anonymous says:

    Jawhawk fan
    Tony is correct. Smartman is a know it all ass who hides behind his computer and talks shit about everything because he can’t get a column of his own but Chuck does have some good points.

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