By Kathy Feist
equity2 has invested $250,000 into the purchase of the Marlborough School in collaboration with the Marlborough Community Land Trust (MCLT) and Marlborough Community Coalition (MCC). The school, located near 75th & Troost, was purchased from Exact Partners LLC which bought the property from Kansas City Public Schools in 2017. The school, built in 1927, has been vacant since 2007.
MCLT and MCC had partnered with Prairie Fire Development Group in planning apartments for the building. But the partnership soured when the Marlborough community insisted on a mixed use development employing retail businesses with townhomes and apartments.
This current partnership puts MCLT and MCC in the driver’s seat.
“For now equity2 is the owner of the property until we can pay them back,” explains Rodger Kube. president of the Marlborough Community Land Trust’s board. “They are essentially the lenders at no interest, But they see this as an opportunity to introduce this (new funding) concept into the city.”
equity2 says their goal is to support the Marlborough neighborhood in launching a Community Investment Trust (CIT). Residents will be offered an opportunity to invest in income generating real estate, while having a say in the kinds of businesses they want to see in their community. “Someone can invest as little as $10 a month into the Community Investment Trust,” explains Kube. “They are investing in the community’s future. They can also withdraw the money when they need it.” The Marlborough CIT will be among the first CITs implemented in the region.
“This investment creates an opportunity for current residents to participate in, and benefit from the broader economic development happening around them” said Emily Lecuyer, Managing Director of equity2. “We’re excited to bring the CIT to Kansas City because it is a proven model for building a more equitable regional economy.”
A feasibility study for the Marlborough CIT will be launched in the coming months. Anyone who lives within the Marlborough neighborhood will be invited to participate and give input on the development of the project through surveys and community discussions in the summer of 2021.
To learn more about the Marlborough CIT, or if you are an impact investor and are interested in innovative community wealth-building opportunities such as these, visit http://www.e2investing.com/ or contact Emily Lecuyer at Emily@e2investing.com.
equity2 LLC is a mission driven impact investment firm committed to deploying capital in inclusive and equitable ways. Formed by AltCap in 2019, equity2 is building on a strong track record of deploying capital in Kansas City’s distressed communities.