"This afternoon, a group called Citizens for Responsible Government will file a preliminary petition with the Planning, Zoning & Economic Development Committee that would challenge construction of a new, 800-room Downtown convention hotel. Halting all movement on the project for at least 45 days, this action is detrimental to the upward momentum and future vitality of our convention destination.
"This disappointing news comes at a time when our city is experiencing significant, healthy gains in occupancy and ADR performance, not to mention an arts and culture renaissance that is second to none among our competitive set.
"Unfortunately, we are no longer at risk of losing business—it’s now a reality. Earlier this week, a local corporation and longstanding partner of ours announced its decision to move its lucrative meeting business elsewhere. Understandably, they could no longer patiently wait for this project to actualize, and as a result, KC has lost all chances to host the group until at least 2023.
"We cannot allow a last-ditch effort by a small opposing minority to threaten all that we’ve accomplished. Stemming beyond the millions in economic impact this project will generate, this delay also risks thousands of new local jobs and plants significant seeds of doubt in the minds of our loyal client base.
"Among the characteristics meeting planners look for in a destination, stability is one of the most essential. Thus, we cannot toy with this matter any longer. Let’s respect the decision and judgment of the City Council and put this matter to bed for the betterment of our region, once and for all.
"Enhancing economic development and improving quality of life is paramount to Visit KC’s mission, and as the region’s official destination marketing organization, it is our obligation to protect these enterprises.
"Let’s move forward and do what needs to be done to put a shovel in the ground. At this point, to do anything else is tremendously irresponsible and inconceivable for a destination as progressive as ours."
President & CEO