OVERLAND PARK, Kan. —Final plans to revamp the farmers market in downtown Overland Park could be put into motion by early next year.
Monday the Overland Park City Council voted 10-2 to move forward with a revised concept plan to redevelop the farmers market pavilion at 7950 Marty St.
Last spring the city selected Copaken Brooks as the development partner for the farmers market project. The city allocated roughly $89,000 for community engagement to get public feedback on the company’s proposed plans.
Based on that feedback, the developer has adjusted tentative plans for the market, with final plans expected to be approved by the city council in early 2023.
Before the pandemic, the farmers market covered 25,000 square feet and included roughly 54 vendor stalls under the existing pavilion structure. Recently the city has opted to spread out the market to cover roughly 69,000 square feet for up to 85 vendor stalls.
The updated plan would expand the market space to 71,000 square feet with roughly 87 vendor stall spaces. Renderings of the project show plans to expand the market space to the east, incorporate additional features along Marty Street and create a multistory apartment complex to the north of the market pavilion.
“I think this has the potential to really bring to life the ForwardOP vision that our community put forward in the last few years to create more opportunities for connections and engaged community gathering place making,” Councilmember Melissa Cheatham said.
Councilmembers Jeff Cox and Scott Hamblin voted against the proposal.
“We are approving ourselves to move forward with a contract that we have no idea how much it’s going to cost or what it’s going to do. [It will cost] probably at least another $100,000, maybe $200,000, maybe $1million. We have no idea, but we’re approving it anyway and away we go,” Cox said.
“I think we need to have more discussions internally with the council on what our objective is before we bring in partners and spend money,” Hamblin said.
City staff will now work with Copaken Brooks to negotiate a contract for the market renovations. The final contract will include a refined concept plan, estimated costs and potential financing options for the project.
City staff hope to have the farmers market contract before the city council for a vote by late January.
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