Elite Sport Mall planned for former Bannister building
By John Sharp
Plans by Elite Sports Management to convert the large former Home Quarters (HQ) building on the northwest quadrant of Bannister Rd. & I-435 into an indoor sports mall were presented to neighborhood leaders in the area on Wednesday, July 18, and received an enthusiastic positive response.
The highly visible building recently has been used for storage for Walmart. The preliminary plans for the proposed indoor sports mall would include four synthetic turf soccer fields and four hard surface courts for volleyball and futsal (a rapidly growing scaled down version of soccer played on a hard surface court with a smaller low bounce ball).
Several neighbors expressed hope that at least some of the hard surface courts would be equipped to also accommodate basketball.
Plans call for enlarging the approximately 134,000 square foot building by about 17,000 square feet to include about 15,000 square feet for netted batting cages on its northwest corner and about 2,000 square feet for pediatric sports medicine on its southwest corner.
The building also will include an adult fitness area, lounge and meeting rooms, and a coffee and juice bar, according to Kate Pfefferkorn-Mansker, owner of Pfefferkorn Engineering & Environmental, who made the presentation on behalf of Elite Sports Management.
There will be about 600 parking spaces on the exterior, she said, and the existing parking lot will be renovated with traffic islands and landscaping. She explained some of the western portions of the parking lot will be converted to grassland to improve water retention.
Elite Sports Management now operates a 65,000 square foot indoor sports facility in Olathe, a soccer specific facility in Lenexa with 55,000 square feet of field space and a much smaller softball facility in Overland Park. Pfefferkorn-Mansker said the company is planning another facility in Olathe.
She said the company plans to submit the project to the city in August so it can be on the City Plan Commission docket for approval September 18. She said the company would love to have it open this year.
An unrelated proposal to build a 5,250 square foot convenience store with four fuel pumps on the site of the former Taco Bell Restaurant that adjoins this site on the west was not well received at the community meeting.
Several neighborhood leaders expressed their thoughts that the proposed indoor sports mall should be able to attract more upscale adjoining development than a convenience store and gas station.