DeVaughn James Injury Lawyers to move to former Palmers Grill space

WICHITA — A new business is opening in the former Palmers Grill space near K-96 and Webb Road where Fritz Co. Grille used to be.

Not surprisingly, it’s not a restaurant.

DeVaughn James Injury Lawyers has bought the building.

“We’ve been growing fast,” says Dustin DeVaughn, who founded the firm with Richard W. James in early 2012.

Their firm, which has 14 employees, including five lawyers, is now in 2,000 square feet a half mile east of Greenwich on Central.

The new space is about 7,500 square feet, and DeVaughn says the firm will be using the whole building.

“Oh, absolutely.”

He says the firm is adding another attorney and a couple of employees.

“We’re wanting to be in there and working before the beginning of the new year,” DeVaughn says.

Classic Real Estate handled the deal.

“We loved the visibility there on K-96,” DeVaughn says. “It’s a beautiful environment right there, and there’s going to be some exciting stuff happening out there.”

Entercom Radio to move to Ruffin Building

UPDATED — After two decades in Brittany Center at 21st and Woodlawn, Entercom Radio is moving its Wichita office.

By early 2015, Entercom will be in the Ruffin Building at 9111 E. Douglas. That’s the building that’s perhaps better known as the former Pizza Hut headquarters.

Entercom is taking 12,000 square feet there.

“The Ruffin Building better suits our needs,” says vice president and general manager Jackie Wise.

Entercom stations include KNSS, 1330-AM, KEYN, 103.7-FM, KDGS, 93.9-FM, KFBZ, 105.3-FM, and KFH Sports, which is on 98.7-FM and 1240-AM. All of them are moving to the Ruffin Building.

“We are very excited about moving over there,” Wise says. “We think it’s a great facility that’s well maintained, and it’s a wonderful location.”

Chris Ruffin and Jon Cyphert of Ruffin Properties and Craig Ablah of Classic Real Estate handled the deal.

“We’re so glad to have them,” Ruffin says of Entercom.

The move likely will happen in February or March.

Gorges Motor Co. used cars now at the Gorges & Co. Volvo lot

WICHITA — If you’ve visited the Gorges & Co. Volvo dealership near K-96 and Webb Road in the past few days and thought it looks a little more full than normal, it’s not your imagination.

Scott Gorges says he’s moved all of the used cars from Gorges Motor Co. at 2648 S. Oliver to the Volvo lot.

“We just decided that the time had come to make the transition (and) close our South Oliver store,” he says.

“It just made sense. The neighborhood’s been changing down there a long time.”

Gorges says there are fewer and fewer retail outlets in what had once been a bustling area.

“We felt like we just wanted to focus on our Volvo store and focus on growing out here,” he says. “It just became so much better out here.”

His grandfather, Fred, founded the Volvo franchise in 1957 at 1958 N. Broadway. He opened a used-car lot on South Oliver three years later.

“We’ve always been a big used-car dealer,” Scott Gorges says. “We’re going to continue to sell all makes and models.”

Gorges says his father, Mark, always knew he wanted to be in a growing part of Wichita.

“My dad bought this property out here,” Gorges says of the North Webb dealership, which opened in 1997.

Read More »

New 3D-XEnergy to move into Domestic Design Building

WICHITA — Some new energy is coming to the Domestic Design Building in the Douglas Design District.

The new 3D-XEnergy, an oil and gas exploration company, is taking 2,578 square feet in the 1915 building at 1425 E. Douglas.

“They’re doing a lot of renovation, and a lot of kind of creative companies are in it now,” says partner Andy Kemmer.

Kemmer had been involved with another company, Vanguard Petroleum, before forming this LLC in March.

Geologist Monica Williams is a colleague in 3D-XEnergy.

The unusual name is a reference to the firm’s use of three-dimensional seismic technology in exploration.

Craig Ablah of Classic Real Estate and Marty Gilchrist and Randy Johnston of J.P. Weigand & Sons handled the deal for the space.

Brent Dorrah of neighboring ACI Design Studio is redesigning the space, which should be ready by early September at the latest.

Kemmer says he’s been in the oil business for more than 35 years.

“We all tend to put partnerships together with other oil guys,” he says.

Kemmer says he likes the idea of being with creative companies in the building, such as ACI, Greteman Group and the Workroom. He calls it a “comfortable” surrounding.

“It’s good people.”

Broadway Home Medical owners to open Lindsey Medical Supply on west side

WICHITA — Broadway Home Medical owners Brian Lindsey and his father, Michael, are expanding their business with a new company.

Lindsey Medical Supply will be similar to Broadway Home Medical, but it won’t work with insurance companies or Medicare.

“The difference is that we’re going to do a cash-only store,” Brian Lindsey says.

“We’re looking for a whole different business model to get away from reimbursements from insurance companies because they’re getting harder to collect from,” he says. “They don’t want to pay you.”

Both outlets will carry similar supplies, including walkers, wheelchairs, bath safety items, breathing equipment, hospital beds and lift chairs among other things.

Brian Lindsey says Broadway Medical Supply can’t charge customers different amounts from insurance companies or Medicare out of the same retail outlet.

“You’re pricing has to be the same across the multiple players,” he says.

That’s why the Lindseys need a second outlet.

Broadway Home Medical is in 8,000 square feet, 6,000 square feet of which is the retail space, just north of Lincoln and Hillside.

Lindsey Home Medical will be in 4,000 square feet on Central just east of West Street. The Lindseys purchased the 8,000-square-foot building, which is home to Scharenberg Chiropractic Offices. Scharenberg will remain there for now, but its space is something that Lindsey Medical Supply likely will expand into one day.

Troy Farha of NAI Martens and Craig Ablah of Classic Real Estate handled the deal.

Lindsey Medical Supply will have a soft opening on Monday.

Despite the appearance of a real estate sign, the Hill Bar and Grill is still opening

WICHITA — About a month ago, Have You Heard? reported that the Hill Bar and Grill is still on track to open later this month or in early May, but some people still doubt it.

The reason is a Classic Real Estate sign in the window of the future business in the former Barrier’s space at Douglas and Oliver.

It’s true that the owners are seeking a new tenant, but it’s for an extra 2,200 square feet in the building – not for the Hill’s space.

King’s Family Sale & Resale furniture store to close after 60 years, but the date isn’t set

WICHITA — Sixty years after opening his King’s Family Sale & Resale furniture shop at Harry and Hillside, Tony King is preparing to close it.

Whether that’s in three weeks or sometime in the new year, he hasn’t decided.

King is selling his land at the southwest corner of the intersection to CVS, which is putting a pharmacy there.

Don Ablah and his son, Christian, of Classic Real Estate handled the deal.

It looks like King may be leaning toward staying open until CVS starts construction.

“The answer’s probably yes — if I can last that long,” says the 92-year-old, laughing.

As a third generation builder, King says he probably shouldn’t have ventured into furniture sales.

“I probably never should have gotten into a retail store,” he says. “Not my specialty.”

He says he opened it “to give my wife a job.”

Pat King had been a teacher.

“I made her into a furniture sales lady,” Tony King says. “I had to learn the business the hard way.”

At the time they opened the store, it was in the corner of the strip center at the intersection.

They briefly closed the store when Pat King became ill about a decade ago. When Tony King reopened it about a year later, it was in the building behind the former store, where it’s been since.

Habitat For Humanity ReStore is now in the corner space but is moving out within the month to its new home in the Plaza West shopping center at Central and West.

“I may be back in the corner again,” King says.

He says he can’t lease the Habitat space to anyone else for the short time it’ll be vacant, which is part of the reason he’s considering moving in.

“I don’t particularly want to. I think we do all right right here.”

So why bother?

“Well, we’ve got a lot to sell.”

Read More »

Developer confirms CVS coming to Central and Oliver

UPDATED — Developer Christian Ablah now confirms what planning documents showed this summer:

A CVS store is coming to the northeast corner of Central and Oliver. Ablah and his father, Don, of Classic Real Estate handled the deal.

CVS representatives have yet to confirm that the Rhode Island-based chain of pharmacies is entering the market, but construction already has begun on one of the stores at the southwest corner of 13th and Maize Road.

A CVS also is coming to the northwest corner of 21st and Amidon.

The same planning documents that show replatting for the store at Central and Oliver also show that one is in the works at the southwest corner of Harry and Hillside.

The former Rossiter liquor store will be torn down to make room for the CVS at Central and Oliver, which will also be on property where a bingo parlor used to be. Ablah says that corner, which he says is one of the main ones in College Hill, has been popular through the years with businesses such as the Tower Theater.

Read More »

CVS to open at 21st and Amidon

WICHITA — For a company that so far is not discussing its entry into the market, CVS is awfully busy.

Since February, Have You Heard? has been tracking the activity of the Rhode Island-based chain of pharmacies in Wichita.

The latest deal to be finalized is for a store at the northwest corner of 21st and Amidon.

In July, the company was working on replatting property for possible stores at the southwest corner of Harry and Hillside and the northeast corner of Central and Oliver, according to documents filed with the planning department.

In August, CVS completed a deal for a store at the southwest corner of 13th and Maize Road.

Classic Real Estate’s Christian Ablah and his father, Don, represented CVS in the latest deal and for the store that’s coming to 13th and Maize Road.

Construction should start on the store at 21st and Amidon by the first of the year, and it should open by summer. The CVS at 13th and Maize Road is on a similar schedule but may open first.

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.