UPDATED — Epic Sports, a Wichita-based team sporting goods supplier, is asking the city for a 90 percent 10-year tax abatement to help it purchase and remodel the former Coca-Cola plant at 3001 E. Harry.
Currently, Epic Sports has a 75,000-square-foot warehouse at 1730 S. Laura and an office at 400 S. Emporia. It would move both facilities to the 160,000-square-foot former Coca-Cola space for an almost $2.5 million expansion.
“I’m actually worried that Coca-Cola building may not be big enough,” says Epic Sports president Gary Proctor, who founded the company in 1998.
When he moved into the 75,000-square-foot current space, Proctor says, “We overflowed it in two years.”
He’s eyeing another building that could work for any future overflow.
Proctor says he’s also considering buildings in Oklahoma City and Hutchinson.
“We’ve got some real good opportunities in Oklahoma City,” he says. “They’re pretty aggressive right now.”
That’s not his first choice, though.
“I mean, we prefer to stay here.”
His request will go before the Wichita City Council on Tuesday.
City Council member James Clendenin, whose district the former Coca-Cola plant is in, is traveling and hasn’t had a chance to study the Epic Sports proposal yet. He’s looking forward to it, though.
“My ears always perk up, and I’m always very happy when people show a little bit of interest in southeast Wichita, and so I’m extremely interested to get more up to speed on this,” Clendenin says.