Demolition work under way at Twin Lakes in preparation for possible development

WICHITA — In preparation for possible new development, there’s demolition work under way at Twin Lakes, the shopping center at 21st and Amidon that once was Wichita’s premier retail destination.

“The owners are demolishing two portions of the property to clear ground for a new development, but they don’t know what that new development is going to be,” says Brad Saville of Landmark Commercial Real Estate, which manages the property.

The Colorado-based owners “thought it would be better to demolish portions of the center that were obsolete.”

Saville says a couple of areas of the center have been difficult to rent in recent years. That includes the former Sears automotive center on the south side of the property. Saville says the owners are considering doing a multifamily residential development there.

The former cinema at the center, which last was home to Aaron’s, also is being demolished. Saville says that area, which is on the west side of the property along Amidon, could potentially be used for a freestanding retail outlet.

We’ll let you know what happens.

Abuelo’s inching closer to west-side deal

WICHITA — Abuelo’s, the Mexican restaurant chain that opened at the Waterfront in April 2004, is working on a deal for west-side space.

“It’s been a good market for us,” Abuelo’s director of marketing Melanie Carroll says of Wichita.

She says the Lubbock-based company is always looking for growth opportunities and believes Wichita could sustain two Abuelo’s restaurants, but she won’t share details beyond that.

Landmark Commercial Real Estate president and CEO Brad Saville, who represents Abuelo’s in Wichita, says the chain is eyeing three west-side sites and hasn’t yet determined where it will go.

Other sources, though, says Abuelo’s is getting closer to a deal at a site near the Kellogg and Ridge Road corridor not far from where the new Twin Peaks is going to open.

Earlier this month, Have You Heard? reported that Twin Peaks, which already has an east-side site, is going to open at 7325 W. Taft. It will be in a building across Ridge Road from Carlos O’Kelly’s and Panera Bread, which is south of Maple and Ridge.

The area is becoming a hot spot for restaurants such as Applebee’s, McAlister’s Deli, Chipotle Mexican Grill, IHOP and Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers among others.

Look for more news on Abuelo’s in the months ahead.

Family Dollar to open at Second and West

UPDATED — Another new Family Dollar store is in the works for Wichita.

Construction has just begun on an 8,300-square-foot store on the southwest corner of Second and West streets. This is a new prototype for Family Dollar.

Several of the stores have opened in the Wichita area in the last couple of years. This makes a dozen total.

This one should be open by early May at the latest.

Brad Saville of Landmark Commercial Real Estate brokered the deal.

Look for news about a couple of more Family Dollars coming soon.

Northwestern Mutual RPS Financial Group to move to Hartman Oil Building

WICHITA — Northwestern Mutual RPS Financial Group is moving from its current space near Murdock and Waco to new space at the Hartman Oil Building at 10500 E. Berkeley Square Parkway.

In a news release, managing director Sean Miller said he likes the upscale surroundings and ongoing development near the Hartman building and says the move will position the office to add new employees.

The company, which has 18 financial representatives and their staff members, hopes to add 35 representatives and interns in the next 15 months.

Nationwide, Northwestern Mutual has more than 7,000 financial representatives and hopes to add 5,500 more.

Brad Saville of Landmark Commercial Real Estate handled the deal for the space. Shelden Architecture is the architect, and Icon Structures is the contractor.

Northwestern Mutual will move into its more than 9,100 square feet in December.

Twotrees Technologies is the first tenant in the new Firestone Place

Brad Saville of Landmark Commercial Real Estate in front of the new Firestone Place.

UPDATED — The former Automobilia space at the northeast corner of First and Emporia is getting a new life along with some new tenants.

“It’s kind of something we’ve been looking at for a long time because we’ve got a vested interest in our property across the street,” says Brad Saville, president and CEO of Landmark Commercial Real Estate.

The Landmark office is across the street on the southeast corner. Saville, Landmark broker Scott Harper and another partner formed 2point LLC to redevelop the former Automobilia space. They’re calling it Firestone Place.

Saville thinks the original occupant of the building was a Firestone tire dealership. He’s still trying to learn more about it.

“I’m really interested in the history of it.”

SBA Construction and Innovative Construction Service are remodeling the 8,271-square-foot space. Features include exposed brick, open ceilings and easy-access parking.

There’s room for three tenants in the building. Harper and Landmark’s Craig Simon are handling the deals.

One, Susie and Jim Smith’s Twotrees Technologies, is signed.

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Former Dillons space at Douglas and Meridian sells and will be leased

WICHITA — The former Dillons at the southwest corner of Douglas and Meridian has sold, and a new occupant is likely to be in the building relatively soon.

Tom Schmeidler and a group of investors called DOME LLC — for Douglas and Meridian — closed on the building last week and are looking to lease it.

“There’s a couple of different entities that are very interested in it,” Schmeidler says.

One would take the entire 20,000-square-foot space, but Schmeidler says he’s opening to dividing the space between users.

The size of the building and its parking — there are about 120 spaces — made the purchase attractive, Schmeidler says.

“It’s a very stout building,” he says. “It’s a block building.”

It also has a basement.

“It’s in the core of Wichita, so if somebody needs to be close to downtown … this is close enough, plus this has the parking,” Schmeidler says. “There’s few buildings that are close to downtown that have the availability of that much parking.”

Brad Saville of Landmark Commercial Real Estate and Grant Tidemann of J.P. Weigand & Sons handled the sale. Saville also is representing DOME in leasing the space.

Taco Bueno to sublease West Street space

WICHITA — When the Taco Bueno at 333 S. West St. caught fire in August due to a carelessly thrown cigarette, a fire official said it likely would be a long time before the restaurant would reopen.

Turns out it won’t happen at all.

“They decided not to reopen it,” says Brad Saville of Landmark Commercial Real Estate.

He’s now helping Taco Bueno sublease the 2,500-square-foot space, which is just south of the southwest corner of Maple and West.

“The most important thing is the city has already widened and improved West Street,” Saville says.

The building has a drive-through and has been entirely rebuilt, he says.

“You sure wouldn’t have known there was any damage to the property,” Saville says.

“It’s pretty good real estate.”

Hobby Lobby to open in Regency Lakes at 21st and Greenwich

WICHITA — Another major building is under construction at Regency Lakes next to where Cabela’s opened last year.

According to documents filed with the city, Hobby Lobby is building a new 55,000-square-foot store.

Regency Lakes, a Laham Development property at the northwest corner of 21st and Greenwich, is home to SuperTarget, World Market and Hampton Inn & Suites among other things.

Hobby Lobby will go between World Market and Cabela’s, which opened in an 80,000-square-foot space in March 2012.

It looks like the Hobby Lobby currently on the east side at 21st and Woodlawn in Brittany Center will be closing when the new one opens.

There’s also one on the west side in the center at the southwest corner of Central and Ridge.

Building plans for the Regency Lakes Hobby Lobby indicate the store will be based on a new prototype for the craft chain.

Brad Saville with Landmark Commercial Real Estate handled the deal.

There are still a few pad sites left at the 60-acre development. That includes one on the corner, one between Subway and Chili’s and one north of Chili’s.

No one involved is talking just yet, but Hobby Lobby is slated to open yet this year, so look for more details soon.

Kwik Shop to open at Stonebridge

UPDATED — A new Kwik Shop is coming to the Stonebridge development at the southeast corner of 37th Street North and Maize Road.

“Our customers have spoken, basically,” says Clay Brasher, Kwik Shop’s director of real estate. “That’s the main reason.”

Kwik Shop, which is operated by Kroger, has more than 125 stores in Kansas, Iowa and Nebraska. There are 19 Kwik Shops in Wichita. Kroger-owned Dillons has a number of fuel centers at its stores as well.

“We can use the larger presence,” Brasher says.

Menards anchors the 37-acre Stonebridge development, and Sonic also opened there a few weeks ago. Kwik Shop is the third business to be announced there.

“We feel like it’s going to help us spur even more activity,” says Randy Furstenberg, CFO of Vantage Point Properties, the Stonebridge developer.

“Them going there gives us some momentum that will help us.”

Brasher says he’s not sure how big the Kwik Shop will be yet.

“We’re actually still developing our plans on the size and everything it will include inside the store.”

There won’t be a pharmacy as some Kwik Shops now have, but there will be grocery items.

“It’ll have a large offering of food products in it,” Brasher says.

Construction on the store will start this year and should be completed by spring.

“So it’ll be a pretty quick deal for them,” Furstenberg says.

Vantage Point’s Marty Moody handled the deal with Grant Tidemann of J.P. Weigand & Sons, Brad Saville of Landmark Commercial Real Estate and Christian Ablah of Classic Real Estate.

 

 

 

Willowbend Animal Hospital to open on the east side in August

Michael Johnson and his dogs, Marty and Mabel.

WICHITA — Veterinarian Michael Johnson, who has practiced in the Wichita area for 17 years, is opening his own animal hospital next month.

Willowbend Animal Hospital will open Aug. 8 at 7606 E. 37th St. North, which is between Rock Road and Woodlawn.

“I just wanted a facility that I could provide the services that I want to for my clients and my pets,” Johnson says. “Specifically, I’m very passionate about managing chronic pain with pets.”

Johnson says pet owners often are unaware their pets are in pain.

“They expect the pet to act like we do when they’re in pain, and that’s not how they act,” he says.

For instance, he says, dogs are pack animals who wouldn’t want to show pain to others.

“They’d be hiding it if they could.”

Johnson says cats go into seclusion, which may be difficult to differentiate from their regular behavior.

Some issues, he says, owners may chalk up to the aging process, when actually their animals are in pain.

“I just believe that our pets can not speak for themselves,” Johnson says. “They suffer quietly for years with undiagnosed and untreated pain, and they never enjoy life as fully as they could.”

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