We recently completed the new Interstate Flats in midtown and Mike Sinclair caught some beautiful photos just before the holidays. Located along Kansas City’s historic Amour Boulevard, the Interstate Flats were home to the Interstate Bakeries Corporation Headquarters from 1952 until it’s relocation to Texas in 2009.
In 2013 Chicago-based developer Silliman Group seized the opportunity to extend its community revitalization efforts and purchased the property. To date, more than 28 properties have been renovated and have contributed to the complete revival of the historic boulevard. Unlike any of the other restored properties, all dating from the early 1900s, this building provided a unique opportunity to retrofit a historic building from the modernist movement. Placed on the National Register of Historic places, the project utilized both State and Federal Historic Preservation tax credits, a valuable federal resource that has now fallen under scrutiny within our current administration.
Innovative re-purposing and fine craftsmanship played a key role in the re-design—salvaging vintage glass partitions and doors, retaining key components of the existing light fixture design, restoring the solar screens, and renovating the automobile courtyard into common area amenity spaces. To compliment this thoughtful approach to historic restoration, el dorado designed, fabricated and installed custom steel components including a sunscreen above the front door on the south façade and east façade; handrails inside the building stairwells; fencing for areas around the perimeter of the building; and a secure gate enclosures for the new amenities courtyard. The custom sun screens were inspired by the pattern of a mid-century brise-soleil that was removed due to poor condition, resulting in an updated façade sensitive to the building’s history.
The design of the residential units took full advantage of the building’s interior patina. el dorado proposed elegant, white kitchen systems that serve as a contemporary counterpoint to the surrounding historic woodwork. Common areas, flooded with natural light, celebrate the building’s midcentury roots while offering updated amenities, including harvest-table seating and a billiards lounge.
Through creative use of unit mixtures and occupying the lower level, the project exceeded pro-forma requirements and achieved 39 residential units while still providing ample parking. A unit mix of studios, 1-bedroom and 2-bedroom units are urban in size and scale, ranging from 415 sf to 850 sf. Through smart, efficient adaptive re-use and careful historic preservation, Interstate Flats contributes a historically significant housing option to a growing population of urban dwellers in Midtown, Kansas City. With a few other projects underway close by, el dorado is proud to be a part of Midtown’s revitalization, one building at a time.