Kansas City, here we come?

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Like many older American cities, Kansas City, MO has struggled in recent years to retain business and residents. Itâ€â„¢s pretty well known that the city shuts down after the workday concludes. That trend appears poised to reverse itself as creative and forward-thinking citizens, city officials and developers embark on construction of the $800-million Power & Light District, encompassing eight blocks in downtown Kansas City. The district will transform what has long been considered a critical undeveloped area of downtown and will provide linkage between the new Sprint Center and the expanded H. Roe Bartle Convention Center. The project is scheduled for completion next fall.

In town this week to report on the stunning restoration of the historic President Hotel, perfectly located directly across from a large section of the district, I marveled at the exciting mix of retail, residential condos, restaurants, lodging and entertainment venues rising from the ground. I also wondered why I hadnâ€â„¢t been aware up until now of this exciting project.

So, a note to you KC hotel operators and city promoters: if this lodging journalist is relatively clueless about this new city jewel, perhaps the traveling public and those all-important convention and meeting planners are out of the know, as well. Isnâ€â„¢t it time to rev up your publicity and marketing machines and get the word out?

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