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Archive for Saturday, May 3, 2014

40 years ago: Consultants recommend more retail, office space for downtown Lawrence

May 3, 2014

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From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for May 3, 1974:

Lawrence in 1974 had "continued potential for a vibrant and stable local economy," according to a management consultant firm presenting an initial report to the city. For $11,000 from the federal Neighborhood Development Program, the Kansas City, Mo., firm Lawrence-Letter and Co. had been asked to prepare an economic feasibility and land use study for the north end of the central business district. The final report was expected to propose a major retail complex in the 600 block of Massachusetts and more public recreation facilities in the same area. "There appears to be a significant potential for future retail expansion in the central business district," the report stated. On the long list of recommendations was more retail space, including a "home improvements center" of 30,000 square feet and a larger building, perhaps over 60,000 square feet, to house a department store, a drug store, specialty shops, and a dinner theater. More office space was also suggested, with the consultants saying that a four-story office structure would be economically viable by 1977. It was also recommended that the bus and train stations be moved to just west of Robinson Park, the small park at the northwest corner of Sixth and Massachusetts.

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