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City Moving Forward On Spaghetti Works, Naftzger Park Developments

Nadya Faulx
The Spaghetti Works building is visible behind a banner circling the construction site in downtown Wichita. The vacant building will be converted into 41 apartments, and commercial space will be built on the lot along Douglas Avenue.

The city symbolically broke ground Thursday on a multimillion dollar project to renovate the old Spaghetti Works building and historic Naftzger Park in downtown Wichita.

Credit Nadya Faulx / KMUW
City leaders and project developers stand ready to symbolically "break ground" at the site of the new Spaghetti Works District.

Construction started in May on the project at Douglas and St. Francis, which will convert the vacant Spaghetti Works building into 41 high-end apartments, add 60,000 square feet of commercial space along Douglas Avenue and redesign Naftzger Park from its original Victorian look to a "modern, urban" area.

Mayor Jeff Longwell said the space will connect downtown Wichita and Intrust Bank Arena to Old Town, encourage walking and raise the aesthetic appeal there.

“This area has long been underutilized in our city, and this is a testimony to the crossroads that we’re currently at," he said.

The $23 million dollar Spaghetti Works development is the result of a public-private partnership between the city of Wichita and several developers, including TGC Development Group and Landmark Commercial Real Estate of Wichita, and Sunflower Development Group of Kansas City, Missouri. The Martin Pringle law firm is the first confirmed tenant in the development.

The project was the catalyst for the nearly $4 million in planned renovations for Naftzger Park next door, which is funded partly by a recent donation from Evergy, the new parent company of Westar Energy and Kansas City power and Light. The city and Tax Increment Financing will fund the rest.

Follow Nadya Faulx on Twitter @NadyaFaulx. To contact KMUW News or to send in a news tip, reach us at news@kmuw.org.

Nadya Faulx is KMUW's Digital News Editor and Reporter, which means she splits her time between working on-air and working online, managing news on KMUW.org, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. She joined KMUW in 2015 after working for a newspaper in western North Dakota. Before that she was a diversity intern at NPR in Washington, D.C.