An expanded Hen House and a new 5,000 square foot retail space replacing the former Waid’s Restaurant were among the high-level plans for the Village Shops LANE4 President Owen Buckley revealed during a presentation to the Prairie Village City Council on Monday.
The renovations, scheduled to begin before the end of the calendar year, will be funded in part with proceeds from the 1 percent Community Improvement District sales tax that’s been collected at the center since 2011.
Buckley said the Hen House renovation would allow the store to expand from its current 18,000 feet to approximately 32,000 square feet. The Hen House project will build to the north of the current grocery store space, expanding the market’s footprint into the area that’s currently a parking lot.
“Hen House is losing business to other stores at its current size, and they feel they can be competitive in the 30,000 to 35,000 range,” Buckley said. “It will be extremely upscale store, but it will cater to the entire three mile radius around the store.”
Assuming plans for the projects are approved by the Prairie Village Planning Commission, LANE4 says it intends to demolish the Waid’s building and replace it with a retail building. The new building will have styling similar to the facility that houses Village Flower Company, Starbuck’s and Dolce Bakery, and will be constructed just to the north of the current Waid’s building. Buckley said that while no businesses have been signed for the new retail space, he anticipated it would be occupied by up to four tenants.
The renovations will also include a major revamp of Mission Lane, with the installation of high-end pedestrian walkways and a fountain at the southeast corner of the Hen House building. Buckley told the council LANE4’s attorneys were proceeding with plans to convert Mission Lane from a city street to a private one.
Buckley also noted that LANE4 has been in discussions with Macy’s about the company’s plans for its Village Shops location — often considered outdated and underperforming relative to the rest of the center. He said Macy’s executives have expressed interest in making improvements to the store, though there are no firm plans for the near future.
“We think they’re really missing the boat here — and frankly their executives that we’ve met with agree with us,” Buckley said.