Crown Center is a mixed-use development located in the heart of downtown Kansas City, Missouri. The neighborhood was built in the 1960s by the Hall family, the founders of the Hallmark Cards company. The Hall family wanted to create a new type of urban development that would revitalize the downtown area, which had been in decline for many years.
The idea for Crown Center was inspired by the success of Rockefeller Center in New York City, and the development was designed as a mixed-use complex that would combine retail, office, and residential spaces. The Hall family worked with renowned architect Moshe Safdie to create a modern, functional, and visually striking development that would serve as a model for urban revitalization.
Construction began in 1968, and the development was completed in 1971. The complex included several notable features, such as an enclosed shopping mall, a hotel, an office tower, and a residential complex. The development also featured a public square, which was designed to serve as a gathering place for the community and host events and activities throughout the year.
Over the years, this neighborhood has continued to evolve and grow. In the 1980s, the complex underwent a major renovation that included the addition of a new office tower and a pedestrian bridge that connected the complex to Union Station. In the 1990s, the Hall family donated a significant portion of the complex to the Crown Center Redevelopment Corporation, a nonprofit organization that is dedicated to promoting economic development and community revitalization in the area.
One of the most recognizable features of this area is the Crown Center Complex, which is comprised of three interconnected buildings: the Crown Center Shops, the Sheraton Kansas City Hotel at Crown Center, and the Crown Center Office Building. The Crown Center Shops are home to over 60 shops and restaurants, including the Hallmark Visitors Center, which showcases the history and creativity behind the famous greeting card company.
In addition to shopping and dining, this area is also known for its family-friendly attractions, such as the Sea Life Kansas City Aquarium, LEGOLAND Discovery Center, and the Hallmark Kaleidoscope, which is a hands-on art experience for children.
Crown Center also features several outdoor spaces, including the Crown Center Square, which is a public plaza that hosts a variety of events and activities throughout the year, such as concerts, festivals, and an ice-skating rink during the winter months. Nearby, the Liberty Memorial and National World War I Museum is a popular tourist attraction.
It’s located in the heart of downtown Kansas City, which makes it easily accessible by public transportation. The Kansas City Area Transportation Authority (KCATA) operates several bus routes that serve the Crown Center area, including the 47-Broadway, 55-Universities-Crossroads, 57-Wornall, and 85-Paseo. These routes provide convenient connections to other parts of the city, including major transportation hubs such as the Kansas City Union Station.
Additionally, the Kansas City Streetcar runs through the heart of downtown and provides a free and convenient transportation option for visitors and residents. The streetcar stops at several locations near Crown Center, including Union Station and the Power & Light District, which makes it easy to travel around downtown and visit other popular destinations.
Overall, public transportation in Crown Center and the surrounding area is readily available and offers visitors and residents a variety of options to get around the city.
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