Lux developers begin residential leasing

UPDATED — Almost two years to the day that Robert Eyster and Michael Ramsey announced their Lux development, the first residential users will begin moving into the building at the northwest corner of First and Market.

“This building is going to be amazing, and this is just the beginning of something special downtown,” says Jeremy Luginbill of Lifeboat Creative.

Leasing starts today for apartments on the third floor – the first residential available at the building – which will be ready Oct. 1.

“We’re going to have pretty much a smattering of all the different units,” Luginbill says.

That includes units with one and two bedrooms, which start at about $1,000 and $1,150. respectively. The Lux’s only three-bedroom unit will be on that floor as well. It will be almost 1,900 square feet and go for more than $2,000.

Options also include the Essential units, which are streamlined units of about 500 square feet. Those units start at about $650.

All of the initial available units are apartments.

“We will not be doing condos at this point,” Luginbill says.

He says the developers have been “meeting some challenges through the process” because of their commitment to meeting LEED standards.

“We’re just trying to make sure they’re done right rather than just quickly,” Luginbill says.

He says Eyster and Ramsey could settle for silver or bronze LEED levels, but he says that’s not good enough.

“Making sure that we meet gold … is what our goal is.”

The third floor will have a green roof. Luginbill says from his research, this will be the first green roof in downtown Wichita.

“It’s going to be a self-sustaining roof,” he says.

He says that means after the initial growth period, it won’t need to be watered.

“It’s going to be its own little green habitat,” Luginbill says. “It allows people to have green outdoor space in a downtown … high-rise environment.”

On the northeast corner of the building, the third floor was an addition years ago, and not all of it goes up the building’s seven stories.

The Kansas Gas and Electric Co. built the 171,000-square-foot building in 1953, and Eyster and Ramsey are trying to keep much of its 1950s flavor while updating the building.

Luginbill says there have been nearly 200 inquiries regarding leasing.

“We are confident that that third floor is going to fill up rather quickly,” he says. “We don’t see any issue with leasing the third floor.”

He says the Lux’s first two commercial tenants, the Defense Contract Management Agency and the Defense Contract Audit Agency, are in the process of moving into the second floor.

More residential leasing will follow once the third floor is full.

“They will be following floor by floor over the coming months,” Luginbill says.

“We’re excited to see the response,” he says.

He says everyone involved in the project is eager for Wichitans “to see our vision and start enjoying what we’ve been working on these past months.”